THE PERCEPTIONS OF CLERGY ON DOMESTIC VIOLENCE: A PERSPECTIVE FROM THE KWAZULU-NATAL MIDLANDS
Keywords:Clergy, Domestic violence, Gender, Feminist liberation theology
The issue of domestic violence is not a private matter. It inadvertently affects all members of society, including service professionals who assist victims and perpetrators. Among those inflicting violence are members of the Christian community, despite their orthopraxy that condemns violence. Some believe that clergy, the “shepherds of the flock”, play a pivotal role in fostering attitudes that either condone or condemn violence in society. Subjugating women restricts them from reaching their full potential. An understanding of the ways in which clergy manage institutionalised systems of dominance may lead to a cultural shift that does not tolerate dominance by one over another. This qualitative study uses a Feminist Liberation Theology framework1 to explore the perceptions of clergy from the Midlands region of KwaZulu-Natal on the issue of dealing with domestic violence in the Christian community.
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