Next Article in Journal
The Riddle: Form and Performance
Next Article in Special Issue
The Old Wounded: Destructive Plasticity and Intergenerational Trauma
Previous Article in Journal
Folklore in Antiquity
Previous Article in Special Issue
Teaching Incest Narratives, Student Survivors, and Inclusive Pedagogy
Article Menu
Issue 2 (June) cover image

Export Article

Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Humanities 2018, 7(2), 48; https://doi.org/10.3390/h7020048

The Loss of Autonomy in Abused Persons: Psychological, Moral, and Legal Dimensions

School of Humanities and Languages, UNSW, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia
Received: 3 March 2018 / Revised: 28 April 2018 / Accepted: 30 April 2018 / Published: 17 May 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Rape and Trauma)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [238 KB, uploaded 17 May 2018]

Abstract

This paper tries to resolve a tension in popular conceptions of intimate partner violence (IPV). On the one hand, we correctly assume that all abused persons are not the same: they have irreducibly plural personalities. On the other hand, we correctly assume that abused persons suffer from a loss of autonomy. The puzzle is: if abused persons share deficits in autonomy, why does it not follow that they share a set of personality traits? I argue that the psychological states implicated in autonomy-impairment in abused persons are situation-sensitive responses to salient eliciting conditions, not personality traits. This view has substantive moral and legal implications, as it implies that abusers are responsible for inflicting severe moral harms on victim-survivors, and they may also be liable for unlawful abduction and rape, in case the abused person lives with or has sexual contact with the abuser. This is because the conditions of abuse undermine the victim-survivor’s ability to autonomously consent to cohabitation and sexual contact with the abuser. I argue that the best way of protecting people from autonomy-undermining abuse is public education. View Full-Text
Keywords: intimate partner violence; victim-survivor; autonomy; social psychology; social cognition; personality intimate partner violence; victim-survivor; autonomy; social psychology; social cognition; personality
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).
SciFeed

Share & Cite This Article

MDPI and ACS Style

Ciurria, M. The Loss of Autonomy in Abused Persons: Psychological, Moral, and Legal Dimensions. Humanities 2018, 7, 48.

Show more citation formats Show less citations formats

Note that from the first issue of 2016, MDPI journals use article numbers instead of page numbers. See further details here.

Article Metrics

Article Access Statistics

1

Comments

[Return to top]
Humanities EISSN 2076-0787 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
Back to Top