Theories related to domestic abuse and tactics used by perpetrators

Dr Albert Biderman

In 1956, Psychologist Albert Biderman described the tactics the Chinese used to elicit “False Confessions” from the “Brainwashed” American prisoners of war held during the Korean War.  He identified eight tactics used by the captors (listed below).  There are similarities between these tactics and the tactics used by perpetrators of domestic abuse.  You may be able to identify some similarities between the tactics identified Duluth Power and Control Wheel and Biderman’s research.

•      Isolation

•      Debilitate/Exhaustion

•      Degradation

•      Threats

•      Enforcing Trivial Demands

•      Displays of Total Power

•      Occasional Indulgences

•      Distorted perspectives

Dr Biderman described the methods used as ‘A system in which mental conformity is sought through coercion and manipulation embodies an ever-present fear ‘. 

Last modified: Wednesday, 4 March 2020, 9:44 AM