|Author(s)||Marchetti-Mercer, Maria Chiara|
|Title||Family murder in post-apartheid South Africa: Reflections for mental health professionals|
|Published in||Health SA Gesondheid, Vol. 8, No. 2|
|Abstract||In the late eighties the phenomenon of family murder was closely linked to Afrikaans-speaking families faced with political change and-ncertainty. A large study carried out by the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC) at the time disputed this overly simplistic explanation and proposed a complex interplay of interpersonal and intrapsychic factors reflecting a phenomenon which took place-nder all population groups. Recent cases of family murder reported in the media have once again posed serious questions regarding possible etiological explanations for this phenomenon in post-apartheid South Africa. In this article the author reviews the original HSRC findings as well as exploring social and psychological factors, which may be relevant in present day South Africa. A social constructionist perspective is-sed as a theoretical framework for-nderstanding the wider context of this type of violence. In conclusion possible interventions, which move beyond the simplistic but focus rather on the social responsibility of mental health professionals are proposed.|
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