The present study aimed to explore effects of gender and type of profession on the definitions of violence against women (VAW) in Hong Kong. Chinese public services providers (N = 2,589), including clinical psychologists, social workers, police officers, medical doctors, nurses, teachers, and lawyers, were surveyed. Results showed that rape, sexual harassment, and unwanted bodily touch were perceived by over 90% of the public service providers as VAW; and the use of force, the inducement of physical wounds, and the lack of consent were perceived by over 90% of the professionals as important criteria in defining behaviors that constituted VAW. Compared to females, male professionals had a narrower scope of VAW and rated various criteria as less important in defining VAW. Among the respondents, clinical psychologists and social workers had the broadest definition, whereas police officers and lawyers had the narrowest definition of VAW. Lawyers, as compared to other professionals, rated the given criteria as the least important when classifying behaviors as VAW.
Sex Roles – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 22, 2004
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