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Male Peer Support and Violence Against Women

The History and Verification of a Theory

Walter S. DeKeseredy

Publication Year: 2013

In 1988, Walter S. DeKeseredy announced Male Peer Support (MPS) Theory, which popularized the notion that certain all-male peer groups encourage, justify, and support the abuse of women. In 1993, DeKeseredy and Martin D. Schwartz modified and expanded MPS Theory. Today, after twenty-five years of research, numerous studies from a diverse range of fields and practitioners support the original claim, providing a powerful explanation for the mechanism that underlies much of North America's violence against women. This book provides a history of the theory, traces its development and uses over a quarter century, and offers an update on Internet-generated abuse.

Published by: Northeastern University Press

Series: Northeastern Series on Gender, Crime, and Law


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p. 1-1

Title Page, Series

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pp. 2-5

Title Page, Copyright Page, Dedication, Table of Contents

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pp. v-x

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pp. xi-xii

This book is about negative forms of social support, but it is an outcome of very strong relationships with loved ones, caring friends, and inspiring colleagues. We must first thank Claire Renzetti for encouraging us to pursue this project and for so many other wonderful things she has done for us over the past twenty-five years. ...

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pp. xiii-xx

Why do so many men beat, sexually assault, psychologically abuse, and otherwise harm their current and former intimate female partners in ways that few of us can imagine? The main objective of this book is to help answer this question. Unlike Lundy Bancroft cited above, we do not go “inside the minds of angry and controlling men.”1 ...

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1 | Definitional Issues in Violence against Women

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pp. 1-22

Box 1.1 briefly describes the pioneering efforts of Ellen Pence, who passed away on January 6, 2012. Pence will be remembered for her kindness, compassion, scholarship, activism, and friendship, and for saving many women’s lives. However, Pence also played a key role in influencing scholars, practitioners, and government agencies to use broad definitions of violence. ...

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2 | The Extent and Distribution of Violence against Women

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pp. 23-43

Since the early 1980s, over one hundred fifty scientific articles on the extent of male violence against female marital and/or cohabiting partners have been published, with most of them written by U.S. social scientists (Machado, Dias, and Coelho, 2010). This is not surprising, because the United States is the world’s center for crime survey research. ...

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3 | The History of Male Peer Support Theory

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pp. 44-68

What accounts for the high rates of violence against women presented in chapter 2? Social scientific answers to this question range from simple single-factor explanations to complex multivariate offerings.1 Regardless of their degree of sophistication, they are not, as many people argue, “irrelevant antonyms of fact” ...

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4 | Contemporary Male Peer Support Theories

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pp. 69-92

There is a famous scene in the movie The Godfather, Part III, where Al Pacino, in the role of Michael Corleone, leader of an organized crime network, says, “Just when I thought I was out . . . they pull me back in!” Similarly, in 1999, just when we thought we were going to pursue new empirical and theoretical directions ...

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5 | What Do the Data Say?

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pp. 93-118

North American criminology is characterized by a diverse and wide-ranging variety of theoretical perspectives. Yet, one would not know this if she or he only read Criminology and Criminology and Public Policy, which are the two official journals of the American Society of Criminology, or Justice Quarterly , ...

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6 | New Electronic Technologies and Male Peer Support

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pp. 119-136

Count yourself very fortunate or lucky if you are reading this chapter without being periodically interrupted by electronic mail, cellular phone text messages, and/or phone calls. To be sure, we would have completed this book much sooner if it we did not have to respond to a plethora of e-mail messages every day. ...

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7 | Policy and Practice: Where Do We Go from Here?

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pp. 137-154

What is to be done about male peer support for violence against women? Progressive answers to this question have been repeatedly provided since Walter DeKeseredy first started work in this area in the late 1980s. Unfortunately, though, while many positive changes, such as the passing of the 1994 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), ...


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pp. 155-160


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pp. 161-196


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pp. 197-204

E-ISBN-13: 9781555538347
E-ISBN-10: 1555538347
Print-ISBN-13: 9781555538323

Page Count: 240
Publication Year: 2013

Series Title: Northeastern Series on Gender, Crime, and Law