Violence masculine à visage découvert. Donna Ferrato 1

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Run Over by Boyfriend, 1988

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In 1987, Ferrato rode along with the Minneapolis police as they responded to 911 calls. A boy named Diamond made a call saying that his father was physically attacking his mother. When Ferrato entered the house with the police, she immediately secured permission with the mother to photograph. Diamond was the first child Ferrato had seen stand up for his mother at a moment when most children would be afraid. Diamond was angry and expressed his feelings clearly. The image of his bravery not only left an impression on Ferrato and the police, but was hailed as one of the most influential photographs in the world by Life Magazine. Twenty years later, Ferrato searched for and found Diamond. His parents are still together …

Diamond is saying to his father, ‘I hate you for hitting my mother, and I hope you never come back to this house.’

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When I first saw Garth hit Lisa, I couldn’t believe my   eyes.  Instinctively, I took a picture.  But when he   went to hit her again, I grabbed his arm and pleaded with him to stop.    He hardly noticed my presence, nor did he seem to care that anyone was   watching.  This surprised me at the time.  Now I know   that when a man is determined to beat his wife, he will do it in front of the   children, the neighbors, even the police. Garth’s response to my plea was, « I   know my own strength and I’m not going to hurt her – I’m only going to teach her   a lesson. »

The most important thing on my mind was to take pictures to prove that what I was seeing really happened. Without a photograph there would be no evidence.

.. »Suddenly he hit Lisa. Garth raged and threw Lisa on the marble counter. When he finally found the pipe, he smashed it. « I had my own all this time, » he said smugly. « I just wanted to teach you a lesson. »

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When the police officers arrived, 5-year-old Ernie ran out the front door crying, « He’s gonna kill my mommy. » As the police attempted to mace the father, he used his daughter as a shield. When the police took him away, he yelled to his wife that he was going to find her…that she would not know when he would appear next. Ferrato met Ernie and Brianna in February 1997. For more than a year, Ferrato photographed the family as the mother tried to get help.

Ernie & Brianna grew up watching their father horrifically abuse their mom. After their father was arrested and sentenced to 2 years of prison for attempted murder, Ernie began to show the effects of witnessing violence. He turned his violence onto his sister. Community intervention was immediately initiated.

At least 10 million children in the United States live in abusive households. Researchers have found that children as young as 2 years old will emulate violent behaviors, and may come to perceive them as normal. Half of the girls whose mothers are battered will become involved with abusive men. As many as 75 percent of children who see their fathers battering their mothers have behavioral problems. A history of family violence is one of the greatest predictors of juvenile delinquency later.

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I first met Vikki’s mother Carol at a shelter in Pittsburg in 1982. Her body was battered from head to toe. Vikki, who is deaf, was not only a silent witness, but became a victim of the same abuser. In those days, I was interested in the mother’s stories and focused mainly on Carol. There was very little documentation on the lives of battered women. I wanted to understand their pain and how they came to be trapped. The children were off limits as minors and the mother’s always spoke for their children. The greatest misconception was that the children of battered women would be okay if the mother got away from the abuse. Like most photojournalists, I lost touch with my subjects. However, 22 years later, Vikki was the first child from the book to find me.  She was still in a lot of pain and expressed that I had not understood anything from her point of view. Vikki made me aware of how important it is to listen to and respect the children.

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 Minnesota, 1988. Mary left her abuser to live in a shelter with her daughters. She returned to school and began to work with the children of addicts.

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Private Violence, Janice.

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 Living with the enemy.

Desperate Moment, 1988

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Arrested, 1988

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Mont & Jan, 1988.

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Shelters

1st Safe Nite…A mother and her infant son slept peacefully after arriving at the Women Against Abuse shelter.  The next morning she said, « It was our first safe night in a long, long time. »

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http://www.abuseaware.com/

http://www.donnaferrato.com/

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