Listening to Battered Women: A Survivor-Centered Approach to Advocacy, Mental Health, and Justice presents an in-depth, multidisciplinary look at society's responses to domestic violence. Though substantial reforms have been made in the services available to battered women since the 1970s, the book shows how the public and private systems available to victims of domestic violence are still failing to meet the needs of the women who seek help.Using a feminist perspective, authors Lisa Goodman and Deborah Epstein explore and critique the current available services in three different arenas: the domestic violence advocacy community, the mental health profession, and the justice system. In recent years, the options available to battered women have expanded dramatically. However, these reforms have been made at the expense of the contextualized, women-centered focus that was once at the heart of the anti-domestic violence movement.The authors argue that a renewed focus on the principles of the early feminist movement - for example, listening to individual women's voices, promoting supportive communities, and facilitating economic empowerment, could result in substantial progress in efforts to protect and counsel battered women.
A series of concrete recommendations for improvements in the advocacy, mental health, and justice systems are also discussed.Researchers interested in the field of violence, gender studies, psychology of women, mental health trauma, or family law, as well as practitioners working with the victims of intimate partner violence, will find this book to be a valuable resource in their efforts.