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University of Michigan Law School

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Discrimination

Legislation

1993

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Full-Text Articles in Law

An Imperfect Remedy For Imperfect Violence: The Construction Of Civil Rights In The Violence Against Women Act, David Frazee Jan 1993

An Imperfect Remedy For Imperfect Violence: The Construction Of Civil Rights In The Violence Against Women Act, David Frazee

Michigan Journal of Gender & Law

Along with the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans with Disabilities Act, the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) could be the most significant addition to federal civil rights laws in the last century. While potentially revolutionary, the VAWA's civil rights remedy forges two problematic legal concepts-traditional civil rights jurisprudence and "perfect" violence-into a super-remedy that risks combining the worst aspects of each. Those who utilize and interpret the Act can avoid this outcome by situating individual violent acts in the broader social and historical context of gender-motivated violence.