Domestic violence is not peculiar to any society or culture and it did not start today. History records contain incidences of domestic violence even in the ancient time. There are various ways in which these cases of abuse are handled in various places culturally and legally. In other words, each society has its own way of handling domestic violence. The way it is handled in western culture is quite different from the way it is handled in the Asian and African countries. It all depends on how it is viewed in a country legally, culturally and religiously.
As private family affairs
Domestic violence is seen by some people and in some places as private family affair. As such, it does not require the legal interference or the interference of the government. As a private family matter it should be settled internally within the family or according to family tradition. In societies where domestic violence is seen as private family issues, the security agents rarely interfere in such matters. The court is normally reluctant to judge such cases or to punish the offenders. In most cases, the judge will ask the couple to go home and settle among themselves. Some judge will see it as a misdemeanor or less serious crime and will leave the offender unpunished.
This view of domestic violence is basically a traditional view. Though such views are still obtainable in some countries especially developing countries, it is no longer the case in the developed western world. It is seen as a criminal and public case.
Domestic violence as a public case
Domestic violence is a serious public matter in the western countries and other highly industrialized countries. It is treated as a criminal act. As a criminal act, people who are found guilty of the act are punished according to the law of the country. As a criminal act, the police and the court are involved in it. Any person can be charged for such act including women. Once the matter is reported, adequate investigation is made and the case will be filed in a law court. Like every other criminal act, the court has to determine whether or not the accused is innocent. If the accused is found guilty, he or she will be punished according to the law. The person will be acquitted if he or she is found innocent by the court.
As criminal act, all legal procedures are observed. The accused has the right to hire a lawyer to represent him or her in the law court. His or her lawyer can argue him or her out from the case.
Besides handling the case in the family or law court, some people also handle it religiously. This is obtainable if couples are serious adherents of a religious group. One party usually the abused can report the case to their religious leader so that the partner will be counseled.
Domestic violence can also be handled through counseling. The counselor will examine the case and its causes and then counsel the parties on how to avoid it.