Episode 148: Christine Cocchiola on the impact of coercive control and parenting child victims


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On this episode of the en(gender)ed podcast, our guest is Christine Cocchiola, a licensed Clinical Social Worker and a tenured professor at a Connecticut community college, teaching in the Pre-Social Work Program for over 18 years. Christine began her career in social work as Certified Domestic Violence Sexual Assault Counselor for Safe Haven of Greater Waterbury at the age of 19 where she remains a volunteer today. She is currently a doctorate candidate in Clinical Social Work at NYU studying coercive control. We speak with Christine today about her research on coercive control, the impact that this abuse has on adult and child victims, and the advocacy and systems reform that she supports in order to generate greater accountability for abuse.

During our conversation, Christine and I referenced the following resources:

  • Why Christine prefers the term "domestic abuse" instead of "domestic violence" in order to reduce reliance on the violent-incident model
  • The difference between "coercive control" and "situational violence"
  • The importance of calling "MRA" members, "male supremacists"--the sex/gender equivalent of "white supremacists" and not create a false equivalence between a systemically oppressed and unequal group and one with structural privilege
  • Susan Weitzman's book, Not to People Like Us: Hidden Abuse in Upscale Marriages
  • An example of terroristic misogyny where gunman kills ex-girlfriend for allegedly not getting an invite to birthday party and why gun violence reform needs to address the root cause of sexism and misogyny
  • Christine's testimony in support of "Jennifer's Law" for the Connecticut State Legislature


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