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Multiculturalism and Social Work | San Francisco State University

Domestic violence among the Navajo: a legacy of colonization.

Author: McEachern, D; Van Winkle, M; Steiner, S
Author Background:
Date 1/1/98
Type Journal
Journal Title: Journal-of-Poverty.
Volume/Pages 2(4): 31-46
Subject Matter Native Americans
Abstract Domestic violence is the leading cause of injuries to women ages 15 to 44. Navajo women have increasingly been plagued by domestic violence and in response, in 1993, the Navajo Nation enacted the Domestic Abuse PreventionAct. Years of colonization have left their mark on members of the Navajo Nation. The Navajo Nation exists within a climate of institutionalized violence, where some of their traditional values of equality and harmony have beenbroken down. This led to an increase in family violence. Poverty and lack of infrastructure and social services exacerbate the problems that Navajo women face when trying to leave violence in their homes. Using information gatheredthrough experiences as social workers and ethnographic interviews. This paper explores domestic violence among the Navajo in Northeastern Arizona, with a particular focus on the effects of colonization. (There are four additional articlesin this special issue on inequality in American Indian communities.).