VAW Social Change Resource Center

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Accountability to Women Who Are Battered














†††† †††††††† Battering is an experience shared by millions of women across the world.† It would be unusual if we didnít know someone who is battered or hadnít had that experience ourselves.† Yet we often donít know much about battered women.†

We encourage practices that are

accountable to women living with violence!

††††† For many women though, the battering relationship is just one piece of her life.† To define who a woman is, or could be, by that period of pain and crisis paints her as a permanent victim Ė a label we donít ever let her escape.

††††† The truth is that women move beyond battering relationships every day.† They grow and change and define their own path.† Formerly battered women, survivors, and thrivers go on to raise healthy children, contribute to their community, and build stable lives.†

We celebrate organizing survivors for change!


Pence, E. (1987).† In our best interest: A process for personal and social change.† Duluth: Minnesota Program Development, Inc.†††

Women Who Are Battered

Activist Writings†† ††††††††††††

††††††††††††††† Statement of NCADV B/FBW Caucus

Battered/Formerly Battered Women's Caucus calls for an end to mental health/social work

model in domestic violence work.† 2004.† (Find in the box on the left side of the page.)


Survivorís Resolution

Resolution adopted by survivors of domestic and sexual violence at Multicultural Forum on

VAW, Puerto Rico.† 2001


Educational Tools/Handouts


†††††††††††† In Our Best Interests

Radical education curricula for womenís group based on work of Paulo Freire.† Links womenís experience with battering to institutional and cultural actions for change.† Interconnectedness

of oppressions chart.† DAIP, Ellen Pence, 1987.


Favorite readings

What the public should know

Practices Accountable to Women Who Are Battered

†††††††††††† The Politics of Accountability

Accountability understood through social movement theories of oppression. Urges listening

to women's voices.† VCS Community Change Project, 2005


The Politics of Accountability

Jonathan Cohen from the National Organization for Men Against Sexism talks about what

accountability means to pro-feminist men.† n.d.


Direct Services


Out of the Muddle: The History and Visions of Support Groups in our Battered Women's Shelter

A review of "Violence Against Women:† A Curriculum for Empowerment" written by Barbara

Hart and Susan Schechter.† In AEGIS, 1986, pp. 5-15.


Program Administration


†††††††††††† Building Bridges to Womenís Experience

How the DAIP in Duluth continues to place womenís lives at the center of their philosophy

and practice.† Lucille Pope and Kathleen Ferraro, 2006.


†††††††††††† Shelter Song and Capturing the Vision

AEGIS Interview about the Gulf Coast Women's Center, a strong women-centered shelter

in Biloxi MS p. 12-23.† 1986


Explanations of Violence Against Women


†††††††††††† Separating from violent male partners

Vivienne Elizabeth describes battered womenís leaving their relationship as an act of resistant

in the midst of power relations.† Article excerpt, 2003


†††††††††††† How Women define their experiences of violence

Study of how women experience and cope with sexual assault.† Liz Kelly argues that male

dominance of language limits definitions of sexual assault.† Abstract, 1988.


Staff/Advocacy Training

Organizing Survivors for Change

Under Construction

Links to Survivors Organizing†††††††† ††††††††††††

Resources for Organizing

†††††††††††† -† in the Community

†††††††††††† -† in Programs

Social Change Resource Center © 2007,† Afterwords, Inc.

Any fundamental change in the social order requires the changing of societyís collective consciousness.† While changes in consciousness can and must occur at all levels of this hierarchically structured society, its source of nourishment will come from the oppressed.† It will emerge from those least immersed in the thought patterns of domination.† While no one in this culture can escape the devastating effects of the patriarchal imagination, those who benefit by it the least are best able to create a new vision.† Pence, 1987, p. 5



Introduction to Social Change

Reflections on Social Change

Cultural Supports

Oppression & Privilege

Questions of Research


Strategies for Action

Activist Writings



Domestic Violence


Power & Control Tools