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ISSN: 0974-892X


January, 2023



The Voice of Protest: Meena Kandasamy’s When I Hit You: Or A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife

Dr. Ramnath Kesarwani, Assistant Professor, Government Girls’ P.G. College, Ghazipur, U.P.

Protest has been a very vibrant theme in literature and it has been articulated through various forms. The protest literature creates awareness among people to injustices around them as Marshal (2000) has viewed that protest takes place against the wrong doings in society. Thus protest literature acts as a weapon of the voiceless. Moreover, it serves as a vital tool for social transformation, articulating people’s grievances and challenges. The protest is expected to be directed towards transforming the wrong system, not individuals, and focus on the areas of growth and renewal. Its prime focus is on the constructive and corrective criticism so that a better and humanistic vision could be sustained with liberty, fraternity and equality.

The terms domination and resistance are very much co-defining words having meaning in relation to each other. The conflict between the powerful and the powerless is the existing dimension of the conflict for power and authority. This conflict of power can be seen most effectively among men and women. Patriarchy and the stereotypical mindset of the gendered society privilege one party, the men while subordinates the other, the women. The patriarchal privilege, in fact, makes men believe having total control over women – both in terms of their body and mind. Male dominance is a trait of patriarchy – political, social, cultural, economic and sexual. The male dominance puts the idea that men are superior to women – an idea that becomes the major reason of domestic violence. A critic believed that male dominance means that where there is concentration of power, men most likely are to take it.

There are many critics who locate the trend of protest within the socio- cultural nature of the field where there is always hegemonic interplay between domination and protest. The study of power- relation can be understood through this interplay between hegemony and protest. In his book Domination and the Arts of Resistance James Scott emphasises that for the study of power relation we need to understand that “virtually all ordinarily observed relations between dominant and subordinate represent the encounter of the public transcript of the dominant with the public transcript of the subordinate” (13). When we talk about the female voice of resistance we need to focus on the socio-cultural conditions also. Usha Bande points out in her book Writing Resistance that “women’s resistance is variable, complex and multivalent because women live in dialectical relations with the patriarchal ideological structure” (02). Women in society are socialized in such a way that they internalize their subjugation as a natural process, therefore, when they strive to protest against that societal system their protest takes place at multiple levels.

The voice of protest has been well articulated through literary writings by women against the patriarchal oppression. The real experience of women with the patriarchal threshold deliberates them to carve out their stories of protest through different genres of literature whether through poetry or through novel. Their personal experiences, when carved out in writings, become the shared experiences of all women who have been the victim of patriarchy and its agents. Indian women writers are able to equip themselves with the power of pen in order to narrate their narratives either personal or public and thus create a link between their readers and themselves.

Meena Kandasamy is such a writer whose marital life has been one of oppression and subjugation both physical and mental perpetrated by her husband. Unable to bear her painful memory, despite walking out of the marital accord, she relieves herself with the burden of psychological suffering by carving out those painful experiences into novel. Her autobiographical novel When I Hit You, subtitled as A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife, becomes the very platform for suggesting the reality of the Indian women within the marital institution in which they become the victim of domestic violence.

Men have applied various strategies to have control over women. In marital cord the husband has upper hand in Indian family, and if in any case the husband fails to have that upper hand directly he plots in other way to do so. That is what the husband of Meena Kandasamy also does. He wanted to restrict the social connections of Meena channelled through social media. So, he first orders her to stop her activity through social media but when she neglects his order he initiates self-ordeal by burning his skin, a kind of emotional blackmail to have authority over her. He seems to be a hypocrite communist who calls social media platforms like Facebook only as a time waster. According to him “There is no reason why you should be on Facebook. It’s narcissism. It’s exhibitionism. It’s a waste of time” (50). At literal level anyone can take his opinion as concern of a husband for his wife in order to save her from being the victim of social media. But the discourse of the opinion lies in the strategic pattern where a male master wants to discard his woman’s reach to the world through social media, especially her attempt to become a well known writer in English. He knew well that Facebook was her lifeline to the world outside”, a “professional link” to remain active in a “freelance world” (52) to be connected to the literary giants but he did not like her choice of becoming a writer. Meena could have opportunity only at the mercy of others through Facebook and cutting herself off from it meant “an act of career-suicide” (52) but that was what he wanted. In fact, alienating women from the main stream-line has been a very normal tendency of male hegemony. And more so if a woman tries to make her career in writing.

Due to man’s physical, often social, superiority it helps them to perpetrate violence against women and this violence enormously creates fear about which Neil Jacobson and John Gottman say, as quoted by Steven R. Tracy in “Patriarchy and Domestic Violence” that “fear is the force that provides battering with its power” (574). Since there is a strange relationship between Patriarchy and domestic violence, patriarchy is considered as the ultimate reason of abuse against women. Lenore Walker believes that all forms of violence are perpetrated against women because of ‘sexism’. According to her, as quoted by Steven R. Tracy, “sexism is the real underbelly of human suffering” (576). This sexism comes into existence because of the power-struggle when men, with all powers privileged by patriarchy, resort to violence after finding their position being engendered. In a similar context over the views of patriarchy and violence Carolyn Holderread Hegen puts her own understanding of the nature and function of patriarchy when she writes, as R. Tracy quoted, that

In patriarchy, women and children are defined in relation to men who control the resources and the power. Women and children are the other, the object. Men are the norm, the subject. In a dominance-and-submission social order, there is no true mutual care. Subordinates are to care for the needs of the dominants. (577)

Rosemary Radford Ruether also agrees with the opinion that patriarchy is most responsible in promoting violence against women. She thinks that domestic violence against women is, as R. Tracy quoted, “rooted in and is the logical conclusion of basic patriarchal assumptions about women’s subordinate status” (577).

Most of the researchers agree that abuse against women takes place because of abusive males’ sense of insecurity and sense of low self-esteem. R. Tracy states that in order to maintain their “fragile sense of masculinity” abusive men use their force to keep their wives in proper place and to eliminate threats to their limited male potency. The physical abusers use many tactics like verbal threats, control of financial resources and control of her movement and contacts to others so that they can dominate and subjugate their wives. Since man considers himself superior to a woman he tries to have full control over her. Moreover, since he is, somewhere, motivated by a sense of insecurity his domineering attitude gets strengthened. That is what Meena Kandasmy’s husband does. He has the fear of insecurity that he might lose his superiority over his wife if she becomes a well-known writer. Therefore, due to this reason, he tries to block every channel of contact that she may establish from outside in order to forge a new, independent identity for herself. The usurpation of Email Id is the very part of that design of domination. Consequently, she feels “robbed of [her] identity” (55).

The conventional attitude of Indian parents towards daughter after her marriage treats her as ‘other’ and if anything goes wrong in her marital relation they, mostly, hold her responsible for that. It is generally believed that daughters should try to be happy in their marriage at any cost, at least should try to appear happy. Any barrier, restriction put on her by her husband is justified by her parents in order to save themselves from any inconvenience and try to convince her to accommodate with the hegemony of the husband. In the novel Meena Kandasmy tells her parents about the abnormal behaviour of her husband, when he fixes the limit of time for internet access, a kind of “absolute insanity of . . . prohibition” her mother, instead of supporting her, says: “Three hours is a long time, . . . three hours a week will do. I only take ten minutes every day to check my email” (59). Women are stereotyped from childhood that whatever restrictions are imposed on them it is for their own good. Every kind of restrictive methodology is justified in the name of their welfare. This phrase of ‘for your own good’ is so haunting for Meena that whenever her parents justified it she felt like “reduced to being a child again” (60) when her teenage neighbour used to put his finger in her ‘eight year old vagina’ to check for “forest insects and bed bugs and evil imps” (60). In India, most of the domestic violence flourishes because of the tendency of parents who consider their daughter a liability and teach her to be obedient and silent sufferer of the violence  the husband inflicts on her. Meena’s parents also try to convince her to follow her husband’s instruction to be co-operative to him because the “marriage is a give and take. Listen to him. He only means well. Do not raise your voice. Do not talk back . . . silence is a shield and it is also a weapon (157). The parents are always in fear that if their daughter dares to break the marriage bond it will be an insult for them in the town.

Most of the cases of domestic violence and child-sexual abuse flourish in our society just because women and girls are socialized to remain ‘silent’. It is believed that if the woman remains silent and does not react against husband, his anger and frustration may subside and he may treat her tenderly. However, most of the time it proves simply a myth and finding no reaction against his actions, he becomes more violent. Meena recalls how her husband used to find excuses to torture her mentally and then physically. The reconstruction of events that leads to the physical violence begins with trivial accusations like why a particular man calls her ‘dearest’; why her email inbox is empty and clean; why there are only few telephone calls on the call log of her phone, why hasn’t she washed the sink; why she can’t write as anonymous writer; why she consented to attend the conference without consulting him, etc. Meena confesses that sometimes his bones of contention are “so thin that they make me wonder if any accusation is only a ruse and excuse to hit me” (69). This situation of Meena resembles to that of Tehmina Durrani, whose husband Mustafa Khar invented accusations to execute violence against her. Reflecting upon the conflicting condition of Durrani Ramnath Kesarwani writes in “Writing Resistance: An Analysis of Tehmina Durrani’s My Feudal Lord” that she has suffered “in silence for thirteen years often trading her self-esteem and identity. She is trapped in the male dominated society where women are treated as possession and an object to be consumed”, where her world is “plagued by physical abuse, marital rape, hypocrisy, public scrutiny, betrayal” (165-166). Kesarwani also points out that Durrani becomes

the victim of domestic violence which remains invisible because whatever is happening within the four walls of a house is regarded as a private matter and any interference in this matter is taken to be as a breach of privacy of a person, a notion against which the entire crusade of women’s movement popularised world over. (166)

Thus, as Durrani felt lonely and helpless to tell people what she suffered behind the closed doors so was the case with Meena Kandasamy who had no one beside her to tell about what she underwent behind the closed doors. Even if she could find such a chance to share her ordeal she might have not willed to do so.

How ironical as well as hypocritical is the fact that the man, who was a lecturer in English, never hesitated to insult and taunt his wife with abusive words just because she was aspiring to become a writer in English language. Meena says: “Being a writer invites constant ridicule from my husband” (74). He compares the Indian women writers writing in English to those whores who used to serve as the “bridge between the colonizers and the colonized” and now that role of the bridge is performed by “the writer who writes in English” and thus is akin to a whore. This kind of mindset towards the women writers writing in English is highly prejudiced and misogynistic. Here, her husband becomes the representative of those patriarchal agents who are entirely against the idea that a woman should be a writer rather they think it to be a field in which men must have hegemony. He leaves no stone unturned to intimidate his wife when she accepts the invitation to write on sexuality. He tries to distort and malign her image by accusing that she has been asked to write on this issue because she has sexual experience with the men of each age like “who are twenty years old, thirty years old, forty years old, fifty years old, sixty years old, seventy years old” (75). It has been a common belief in patriarchal society that the women who are poets and writers are not ‘good’ women, especially those women writers who openly express their views on sexual issues as it is considered a taboo for women. Meena’s husband, having that kind of mindset, tries to strangle her dreams of becoming a writer by putting every kind of restrictions to move and write. He says, “I do not want you to sit there and keep typing your essay when there are more important things to do. Should I remind Writer Madam that she is also a wife?” (76).

However, despite such adverse circumstances Meena tries to resist those controls and restrictions by nourishing her dream of a writer and does not lose the opportunity to snatch time for it. Her struggle to build her identity as a writer is like a long waged-war against a man who intends to strangle an emerging writer. She says that “all I need is half an hour of freedom and I keep looking for the minute such a chance opens up” (77). In fact, she is not ready to succumb to the role of a ‘good’ Indian wife to dance at her husband’s finger. She was determined to spell off the prejudice of her husband who called her a ‘fake’ feminist capitalizing on her cunt. Instead, she thought that the job of a wife “comes somewhere in the middle: labouring with my cunt, labouring with my hands” (79). Meena’s opinion on the role of a wife is very similar to that of Nila in Taslima Nasrin’s novel French Lover where she says that a wife’s position is no more than that of the three figures – maid, cook and prostitute. Nila compares a wife’s position to that of whores because “she’d have to be the perfect whore and sell herself just as they sold their bodies for some money” (28). Meena knew well that her identity of a writer was associated with her self-respect which was threatened by her sadist husband. She asserts that being a writer is now

a matter of self-respect. It is the job title that I give myself. I realize that my husband does not hate anything in this universe as much as the idea of a writer (a petite bourgeois woman writer, at that), so I forge a sense of reverence towards the job of being a writer. (80)

Meena feels writing to be the potent medium to wage a war against patriarchal feudalistic atrocities. She feels the urge to defy the imposed position of loneliness, the similar kind of situation Tehmina was propelled into by Mustafa Khar when he had imprisoned her with her children in his distant village Kot Aadu. Meena finds poetry as the easiest and potent medium to express her helplessness and the result comes as a mode of resistance and defiance against male hegemony. She had the feeling to defy her husband’s oppressive attitude which could be best executed through poetry because, as she writes, “There is something about my act of writing a poem that disturbs him deeply” (81-82). He knew the power of poetry that’s why he was vehemently against putting her pain into poetry. Although, he himself liked to write poetry focusing on the ideals of communism yet was against her poems. His character very much resembles to Mustafa Khar of My Feudal Lord and Namdeo Dhasal of I Want to Destroy Myself who also talked about communist ideals expressing their vision to reform the condition of the marginalised but in fact their all claims of public welfare proved only a sham as they carried hypocrisy. In public they earned the position of a leader for the marginalised but in their private life were oppressor of their women. Meena tells that she had married this man because he talked about “the revolution it seemed more intense than any poetry, more moving than any beauty” (89). But now, after the bitter experiences of life, she comes to realize that the revolutionaries like her husband used the word revolution only to their own benefit because under this dignified garb of ‘revolution’ he is, in fact, “a careerist, a wife-beater, an opportunist, a manipulator, an infiltrator, a go-getter, an ass-licker, an alcoholic and a dopeheaded” (90). In this respect the opinion of Meena towards her husband is very similar to that of Tehmina Durrani about her husband. Durrani was also impressed by her husband Mustafa Khar who talked like a socialist to bring ideals of public welfare in politics. However, later she realizes that the man whom she married was a complete womanizer, a “professional seducer” (My Feudal Lord 83) who had a glorious image in public life but his private life was flooded with domestic violence and wife beating. Malika Amar Shaikh also had married such a man like Namdeo Dhasal, a Panther man, a poet of powerful voice who led the Dalit Panther Movement to an uproar. However, after marriage she found him only a “rough, a maverick, arrogant, uncaring and often resorted to violence” (Malika 86).  The shared experiences of Tehmina Durrani, Malika Amar Shaikh and Meena Kandasamy attest the claim that domestic violence is the bitter truth of women’s life irrespective of class, caste and religion.

The issue of freedom of expression has been a crucial factor in democratic society in which every individual is privileged with it. However, most of the time it happens in male dominated society that the range of women’s writing is restrained by male authorities, particularly by their husbands thinking freedom of expression may make women faithless towards them. And if any woman tries to reject that restriction she is considered fit to be treated violently and savagely. Moreover, they find it as a better excuse to hide their own sense of inferiority regarding the possible superiority of their wives and try to dominate them by verbal and physical abuse. The experience of Meena Kandasamy seems to attest this opinion when she says that her husband is “railing at me, slapping me, throwing my laptop across the small kitchen, forcing me to delete a manuscript” (87) accusing that she was nourishing her secret past love affairs through writing. This kind of sham accusation was hurled at her only to hostile her writing spirit so that she could not gain name and fame, independent from him, a mentality many hypocrites have. However, Meena pursued her purpose which included writing as a kind of revenge against his masculine prejudices. She was determined “to rub salt on his wounded pride, to reclaim” (88) her space, her right to write. For her writing in English revived her romanticism which marriage had ruined with words like “Bitch. Whore. Slut” (92) flung at her face. According to her if Tamil made her a word huntress, English made her a love goddess. The assumed refuge in English was more crucial to come out of those scary thoughts that pinched her to commit suicide and she felt to be moving like in a pendulum of choice “Alive. Dead. Dead. Alive. Alive. Dead. Dead. Dead” (93). This Hamlet-like situation could lead her to the verge of tragedy if she had not made English language as a medium of expression.

Silence is also considered as a kind of protest and, therefore, Meena assumes silence to register her protest against her husband’s violence. However, her silence irritates him and instead of serving as a weapon it becomes reason of more violence as is apparent from these lines: “He kicks me in the stomach. ‘Prove it! He yells as I double over. ‘Prove it to me that you are my wife. Prove it to me that you are not thinking of another man. Or I will prove it for you’” (163). And later on the same ‘silence’ becomes the reason of horrific experience of life that many Indian wives suffer – the marital rape. Her husband rapes her repeatedly using abusive words: “this is the miracle cure to your silence . . . you are a whore. This is what whores do. This is why I don’t treat you like a wife . . . Next time you taunt me with your silence I will tear your fucking cunt apart. Now say sorry, bitch. Say sorry” (164). The words suggest enough how demonic and violent her husband was. He treats her like an object to be smashed and slashed into pieces through words. This is simply a hegemonic tendency of male superiority to have female body under control and his own weakness.

Rape is one of the prime evils of the modern civil society. When committed outside of the domestic periphery there is possibility of rape case being reported but when the maligning act takes place within the home women suffer it silently. However, now, due to education and awareness women are coming out courageously to speak out against rape. In literature, particularly in fiction, women writers are emerging eloquent to discuss the issue of rape in their writings. To write about rape is also considered as a kind of resistance to rape. Usha Bande comments in her book Writing Resistance that this job of women that they have chosen to “speak rape” is itself a kind of resistance. Their act is a “measure of liberation” because it shows the “shift from serving as the object of voyeuristic (the act under which is derived sexual satisfaction by watching other object or person involved in it) discourse to the occupation of a subject-position as master narrative” (221). The cases of marital rape, although unacknowledged, are not rare in India. Susan Brown Miller states in her classic book on rape that in human history rape has been man’s basic weapon of force against women and also the symbol of the triumph of manhood. She concludes that rape, as R. Tracy quotes “has played a critical function. It is nothing more or less than a conscious process by which all men keep all women in a state of fear” (577). The experience of marital rape is more psychological than physical as it breaks the heart and spirit of a woman who can’t imagine that the man who rapes her is not a stranger, not a masked assaulter but her husband for whom she has to make coffee every morning. Meena felt like Saru, the protagonist of Shashi Deshpande’s novel The Dark Holds No Terrors in which Saru also had the similar kind of experience of marital rape. In Tehmina Durrani’s Blasphemy, Heer also had the similar kind of experience of marital rape in which her husband used to tie her with bed and impose his masculine force into her body. These examples of marital rape suggest strongly how there is a net of shared experiences of marital violence across South Asian society. In his article “From Subversion to Assertion: A Study of The Dark Holds No Terrors” Ramnath Kesarwani writes, “It is a pity that rape within the marital institution is not recognised in Indian families. Believing that a husband has every right over his wife he can do anything in bed even without the consent of his partner” (80-81). He also states that though Susan Brownmiller makes it clear that if a woman chooses not to have intercourse with a specific man and the man chooses to proceed against her will, that is a criminal act of rape, yet it is not accepted if it is done by a husband in Indian tradition.

However, after so many repeated episodes of rape and violence Meena determines to finally walk out the marital bond as there was no reason to continue the horrific experience. Slowly she develops an understanding of the ‘self’ and determines to write her story in the category of “Women writing women” (221). Although she knew that a woman who talks about her private life in her writing is attacked and blamed by the patriarchal society verbally and sometimes even physically yet she took the task of revealing her violent martial relation as a kind of protest which also posed a challenge for the society. To question the established system of male superiority is never an easy task and there is always a threat of being targeted for such daring task yet without question no system can be corrected. However, this challenge was more difficult for Meena because her husband was a social activist and the “messianic status conferred on him for picking up the causes of the dispossessed allows him to entrench myself into communities. At this stage, talking about his misogyny, his violence, becomes an act of blasphemy against a crusader” (233).

Meena’s situation was more like Heer in Tehmina Durrani’s novel Blasphemy. Heer also faced the similar situation of difficulty in exposing the evils of her husband Pir Sain because he was worshiped as the Man of God and to talk about his evil doings was considered as nothing but blasphemy. Heer’s friend Tara also warns her about the danger of exposing the evils of her husband and says, as quoted by Ramnath Kesarwani in “Patriarchy, Religion and Women: An Analysis of Tehmina Durrani’s Blasphemy”, “how will we fight decades of established thought? They will brand us kafir and burn us at stake. Their propaganda is deep rooted” (07). However, this act of exposing the experienced marital violence is a necessity for a woman for two reasons: first, it is about registering a kind of protest against the age old masculine hegemony to control female body as Meena herself claims: “My woman’s body, when it is written down, is rape resistant” (240) and second it is about raising one’s position from being a victim to becoming empowered and it is very much clear from Meena’s views that the “only body I feel empowered to share is the body I fashion out of my own words” (240). On this assertion, Meena strives to share her personal experiences of domestic violence to the public through writing following the wide acclaimed idea of ‘personal is political’.

Autobiography/autobiographical novel has been taken as a challenge by writers to examine and face their life experiences with all their contradictions, and to emerge with a picture of assertiveness. This kind of taking challenge is the manifestation of a writer’s courage because revealing intimate personal details to strangers always incorporates apprehension and slander. When I Hit You: Or a Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife by Meena Kandasamy manifests her spirit of conquering her socio-cultural fear and leaves a permanent mark in the field of women writing as a sign of victory against the silence most Indian women are subjected to. Her autobiographical novel, in a way, also dismantles, what Rahat Imran calls, “the Orientalist stereotype of eastern women as docile and subservient subjects of patriarchal cultures and religions” (05). Meena’s autobiography becomes an act of, as Rahat Imran writes, “feminist resistance against patriarchy and bonding across cultures with women, regardless of their social class and cultural calling who can identify with her gendered experiences of oppression” (92). Thus, by narrating her own life experience Meena seems to stress that action must originate from women’s personal experiences and increased awareness. Partha Bhattacharjee and Priyanka Tripathi also point out in “When a Violated Body Strikes/Writes Back: Unveiling the Violence in Meena Kandasamy’s When I Hit You: Or a Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife” that

Kandasamy did not make any distance with the unnamed narrator or write in a third person. She took it too closely to her heart that in the first section of her novel she gushed out her own stand as a writer as well as the narrator of the story; even it is autobiographical novel, she decreed whatever she had learnt. (51)

This implies that it is women who are best placed to articulate their agenda and demands. The emphasis on women speaking out for themselves is also a pathway of empowerment. Through autobiography/ autobiographical novel a woman narrates her life-history to her female readers who easily identify the story with themselves despite their cross-cultures because women throughout the world share the similar life experiences of torment and repression in the hands of patriarchal power.

Works Cited

Bande, Usha. Writing Resistance: A Comparative Study of the Selected Novels Women Writers. Indian Institute of Advanced Study, 2006.

Bhattacharjee, P. and Priyanka Tripathi. “When a Violated Body Strikes/Writes Back: Unveiling the Violence in Meena Kandasamy’s When I Hit You: Or, A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife”, The Atlantic Literary Review, vol. 2, no. 2, 2019, pp 47-63.

Durrani, Tehmina. My Feudal Lord. Corgi Books, 1994.

Imran, Rahat. Islamic Laws, Gender Discrimination and Legal Injustices: The Zina Hudood Ordinance of Pakistan and its Implications For Women and Shared Oppression and Narrative Repair: Feminist Resistance and Cross-Cultural Communication through Autobiography in the Muslim World. Dissertation. Simon Fraser University, 2005.

Kandasamy, Meena. When I Hit You: A Portrait of the Writer as a Young Wife. Juggernaut, 2018.

Kesarwani, R. “From Subversion to Assertion: A Study of The Dark Holds No Terrors”, The International Journal of Culture, Literature and Criticism, issue 17, April 2018, pp. 73-82.

Kesarwani, R. “Patriarchy, Religion and Women: An Analysis of Tehmina Durrani’s Blasphemy”, International Journal of Multifaceted and Multilingual Studies, issue 1, vol. 1, 2014, pp. 1-8.

Kesarwani, R. “Writing Resistance: An Analysis of Tehmina Durrani’s My Feudal Lord”, Indian Ethos, vol. 7, number 2, Winter 2017, pp. 162-171.

Nasrin, Taslima. French Lover. Trans. Sreejata Guha. Penguin Books India, 2002.

Scott, James C. Domination and the Arts of Resistance. Yale University Press, 1990,

Shaikh, Malika Amar. I Want to Destroy Myself: A Memoir. Trans. Jerry Pinto. Speaking Tiger, 2016.

Tracy, Steven R. “Patriarchy and Domestic Violence”, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society, 50/3, September 2007, pp. 573-94.