The 11 types of violence (and the different classes of aggression)

Violence is not always easy to identify, Since we have it very standardized and, in some forms of expression, can go unnoticed or be taken as something “to be expected”.

In this article we will review the different types of violence and we will analyze the keys to know how to identify them where they occur. The aim is to facilitate the recognition of patterns of behavior which are different forms of violence, which helps us to act on them.

What is violence?

In summary, violence is the use of physical force or power against oneself or against others, For this act to cause physical harm, psychological harm or deprivation. This means that violence is the use of physical aggression to harm a person, but also the use of power, a little more abstract, to cause harm or significantly limit a person’s choices.

The key elements are the existence of a strategy and a series of actions that results in harm to someone, and that one of the main intentions behind this behavior is to harm or attack the someone’s physical or psychological integrity. In other words, the intention to hurt someone is a key factor in talking about types of violence.

From the above it follows that the concept of violence is a very open thing. That is why we can also talk about the types of violence and how to identify them.

The different types of violence

There is no single criterion for classifying types of violence, but several. The most common are generally based on two factors: the manner in which the violence is exercised and the subject (s) who exercise it. These two factors structure the classification of types of violence.

Classes of violence by type of agent

Below we will see types of violence depending on who is inflicting the assault, Regardless of everything else.

1. Self-inflicted violence

It is one of the most stigmatized classes of violence that exists, as in them it is the person himself who hurts himself, Something that is very difficult to understand from the point of view of others. In self-inflicted violence, the person may cut their arms or legs, may be publicly humiliated, may be hit on the head on hard surfaces repeatedly, and so on.

It is common for people who engage in this type of violence to go through very stressful situations, have a personality disorder (often borderline personality disorder), or both. It is also possible that self-inflicted violence will eventually lead to suicide or, rather, be a symptoms behavioral, cognitive and emotional dynamics that lead to suicide. The wounds that someone has inflicted previously are not in themselves the cause that decides to commit suicide.

The perennial debate is that there is a lot of questionable about the concept of self-inflicted violence, as a full focus on violence on the individual may not be the most appropriate if their behavior is the result of the violence than others. . Therefore, when we speak of self-inflicted violence, d **** ebemos keep in mind that behind there may be other agents that we do not know and that they are the cause of this kind of violence.

2. Interpersonal violence

This is the type of violence in which one individual attacks another. In this category we can find domestic violence, bullying, specific cases of violent theft, etc.

Although in interpersonal violence the perpetrator is an individual (or a small group of them), it is possible that this type of aggression has part of its explanation in social phenomena. For example, drug use or poverty are closely linked to conflict.

3. Collective violence

Unlike what happens in the types of violence we’ve seen, in this one the aggression is of a collective nature, of a group or a community against another collective. The motivations for collective violence are generally political, economic or ideological-religious.

It is one of the most damaging types of violence as its negative effects can be felt in many facets of life and since it involves many people it is easy for it to escalate leading to injury and sometimes deaths. For example, the same violence that causes certain minorities to be viewed with contempt by much of the population often contributes to the triggering of physical assaults and even murders.

The situations which favor the emergence of collective violence are political, legal and social phenomena, such as the presence of religious fundamentalism, the systematic discrimination of minorities, the democratic deficits of a State, the monopoly of certain resources. people, or great social and economic inequalities.

Types of violence according to the nature of the act

One can also distinguish between types of violence by looking at how one tries to harm or harm, that is, by observing the nature and content of the aggression. In this category there are the following classes:

4. Physical violence

This is perhaps the most typical and easily imagined type of violence, as it is very visual and easy to identify. In, someone does something to hurt another person’s body, Producing someone’s pain and suffering. Sometimes it can lead to death.

In addition, physical violence usually leaves marks that qualified medical personnel can identify: scratches, wounds, bruises, etc.

5. Verbal abuse

Verbal violence is that in which it is meant to hurt the other person is a message or speech. It may or may not contain insults or taboo words, because the use of this type of resource is not essential to produce psychological distress.

In addition to generating anxiety, this type of violence can damage self-esteem and public image.

6. Sexual violence

To sexual violence behaviors and types of physical contact that denigrate someone because of the attraction of their sexual dimension. When it manifests itself in rape, it goes hand in hand with physical violence, although it should be noted that in these the sexual component is not a simple complement, but adopts a form of violence which consists in trying to harm the other person psychologically.

7. Economic violence

It is a type of violence in which it interferes with the ability of one or more people to use the money they earn. Theft and misuse of bank accounts fall into this category, as does fraud to make investments that turn out to be a scam.

8. Negligence

Neglect is a type of violence that occurs by default, Since in her the aggression consists of not carrying out actions to which it is forced to guarantee the minimum well-being of the rest. For example, a doctor who refuses to treat a person injured by a personal confrontation with that person is negligent.

9. Religious violence

It falls into this category using power to harm people by manipulating them with a series of beliefs and promises on a spiritual level. It is very common to see how cults use this type of aggression to maintain the dominance of those who devote money, time and effort to maintaining the institution.

10. Cultural violence

In this type of violence, aggression is part of a culture’s frame of reference and relate to the signs of cultural identity of a particular culture. For example, the normalization of rape in armed conflict or the removal of female genitalia are examples of cultural violence.

11. Cyberbullying

In cyberbullying Internet and social networks are often used to post information about a person or a group of people willing to ridicule or humiliate. This is one of the types of violence whose scope is difficult to pin down, as the number of people potentially capable of seeing this type of stigmatizing content is very high.

  • To learn more about this type of violence, you can read: “Cyberbullying: analysis of the characteristics of virtual harassment”

A final reflection

Violence, in one way or another, is part of our lives. Even thousands of years ago, before civilizations and writing existed, there were events of great violence among our ancestors which left archaeological traces of aggression. Today, the volume of violence that shakes our planet continues to be overwhelming and, to a greater or lesser extent, seeps into the lives of even those most privileged people with more resources to live away from home. poverty and marginality.

Precisely because the different types of violence have manifested themselves in one way or another depending on the historical moment and the place, each culture has used a way of interpreting and reacting to it. Knowing how to recognize the different types of violence is one of the keys to combating this phenomenon.

Bibliographical references:

  • Alcalde Sánchez, M. (2000). The crime of physical and mental violence in the family. Tirant lo Blanch, Valencia.
  • Bernárdez, A. ed. (2001). Gender and social violence: a question of power *. * Collection of articles from El Escorial Summer University.
  • Burnley, J. (1993). Conflict. Ed. Morata, Madrid.

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