Historically, the year of this movie's release is best remembered for the acquittal in the OJ Simpson / Nicole Brown murder trial. As everyone knew at the time, Nicole Brown was the ex-wife of OJ Simpson, the famous football player. She was domestically abused by Simpson up until the time of their divorce. A number of years later, he would go on to be suspected of killing his former wife. Legally speaking, 1995 was a landmark year for domestic abuse cases especially in the California area where SB 591 is passed which is the law that requires: “... the arrest of the abuser in domestic violence cases, requires arrest for restraining order violations and discourages dual arrests”. It was also the year that abusive spouses were made more liable for any physical harm they inflict upon their spouse because SB 924 found itself being initiated in the area. Under this ruling; “The statute of limitations for personal injury actions involving domestic violence is extended to three years from the date of the last incident. “ (“History of Battered Women's Movement) Thus giving more women the option to get away from the domestic abuse in their homes and then legally filing charges against their husbands for their past acts od domestic abuse. This movie carries a sociological relevance from its time because it showed us that women in the 90's did not have too many laws to protect them against domestic violence and that women normally thought that the violence was something that they caused. The scene in the movie where Katie was trying to cover up her bruises with her sister before finally confessing about the abuse triggers a lot of memories in me about some women whom I know of who find themselves in a state of denial when it comes to their involvement in spousal abuse. Denial seems to be a key factor in this social problem and without any laws to protect the women, most of them opted to not do anything about the spousal abouse. Which would of course eventually lead some of them to thoughts of murder, but not necessarily executing the murder. While watching this movie, I could not help but wonder as to whether Jimmy Pettit, the abusive husband's name in the movie had been exposed to some sort of domestic violence in his own home during his childhood. I thought about this because of the social learning theory that we learned about in class. This social theory dictates that a person is not born with a violent nature. Rather, he learns to become violent because of the behavior of those around him whom he ends
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This paper represents a sociological review of the movie "If Someone Had Known". The writer believes that the movie is an excellent starting point when it comes to educating women about spousal abuse and how it can be dealt with then all hope seems to be lost…
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