A Portrayal of Gay and Lesbian Battering in Contemporary Abuse Textbooks: A Content Analysis

Suzette Cote, California State University, Sacramento

Teaching a family violence course within a criminal justice program can be both an exhilarating and challenging experience. Most students have some familiarity with the issues of family violence, child abuse, and elder abuse and are very willing to share their perspectives ont hese issues in class and on writing assignments. Some even share their own personal experiences with intimate violence. Based on my own experience, gay and lesbian domestic violence, or homsexuality in general, remains one of the final frontiers of scholarly review in a criminal justice educational context. When I began the section of the course on this topic, many of my students responded with intrigue and confusion, some not realizing that this type of violence could occur among these individuals.

This response from students prompted my inquiry into this issue future. This paper will focus on the coverage of gay and lesbian battering in family violence and domstic violence textbooks. A thorough congent analysis will be performed on the most widely used books in these types of courses. This analysis will center on the scope of the coverage (i.e., is there a separate chapter(s) devoted to this issue?) as well as the depth of the coverage (i.e., the number and scope of individual issues covered in each chapter. The outcome of this analysis will shed light on the further need of researchers, scholars, and teachers not only to research and write about this issue but to educate our students about this growing problem,

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Updated 05/20/2006