Self- actualization according to Maslow

According to Maslow, the pinnacle of the human hierarchy of needs is the self-actualization need, the need to develop one’s potential, or to become what one was meant to become. Do you believe people have a need for self-actualization? All people? Why, or why not? Larsen and Buss (2018) summarize some cultural universals identified through research. For example, people in all cultures can recognize several basic emotions, and understand and act upon revenge. Describe self-actualization. Do you think self-actualization is a culturally universal need? For people whom self-actualization is a need, does it make sense to you that it is the pinnacle of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs? Why, or why not? Might the hierarchy vary across cultures? Provide an example of how self-actualization is (or is not) present in the real world.

Sample Answer

Self-actualization represents an idea obtained from the psychological and humanistic theory conceived and credited to Abraham Maslow. According to Maslow, self-actualization entails individual growth toward achievement of highest needs -that makes life meaningful and fulfilling to live. Essentially, Maslow invented a psychological hierarchy of needs which in spirit is the contentment of which hypothetical leads to a conclusion of values on the highest level of maslonic hierarchy, representative of meaning.

Domestic violence, or intimate partner violence as it is sometimes called, is a global problem.The study aims to examine domestic violence that takes place within the walled Indian families and particularly against women.

Domestic violence is a need of control, it includes all kinds of physical, sexual and emotive mistreatment within all kinds of close human relationship. The offenders of domestic violence or abuse are commonly men and the victims or unfortunates are usually women .Violence against women looks like a worldwide epidemic that affects the victim physically, psychologically, sexually and economically. There is uneven power relations in men and women which has led to social control against women by men.The realness of women’s lives remains unseeable to men and women alike and this invisibility prevails at all levels opening with the family to the nation. Although geographically men and women share the same space, they live in different universes. The mere fact that ‘Women hold up half the sky’- does not appear to give them a place of self-respect and equality . Domestic Violence in India is endemic. National Crime Bureau reveals that a crime against a women is committed every 3 minutes, a woman is raped every 29 minutes, a dowry death occurs every 77 minutes, and one case of ill-treatment bound up by either the husband or the relative of the husband occurs every nine minutes. This all happens disregarding the fact that women in India are lawfully protected from domestic abuse under the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act.World Health Organization (WHO) has defined domestic violence as “the range of sexually, psychologically and physically coercive acts used against adult and adolescent women by current or former male intimate partners”.

The most ordinary causes for women hunting and battering include discontentment with the dowry and exploiting women for more of it, disputation with the spouse, refusing to have sex with him, neglecting children, going out of home without letting the partner know, not cooking decently or on time according to the needs, humoring in extra marital affairs, not looking after in-laws etc. In some proceedings infertility in females also leads to their assault by the family members. The desire for dowry, want for a male child and alcoholism of the partner are prima causes of domestic violence against women in rural regions. There have been ghastly reports of young bride being burnt alive or subjected to day-and-night harassment for not bringing home the amount of needed dowry. Physical abuse such as slapping, beating, arm twisting, stabbing, strangling, burning, choking, kicking, threats with an object or weapon, and murder. Women in India also admit to striking or beating because of their hunch about the husband’s sexual engagement with other women.

The World Health Organization reports that the magnitude of women who had ever experienced physical or sexual violence or both by an intimate partner ranged from 15% to 71%, with the majority between 29% and 62%.2 India’s National Family Health Survey-III,3 carried out in 29 states during 2005-06, has found that a significant quotient of married women have been physically or sexually abused by their husbands at some time in their lives. The survey bespoke that, nationwide, 37.2% of women ‘experienced violence’ after marriage.

In India, more than 55 percent of the women suffer from domestic violence, especially in the states of Bihar, U.P., M.P. and other northern states. Bihar was found to be the most violent, with the abuse rate against married women being as high as 59% Strangely, 63% of these incidents were reported from urban families rather than the state’s most backward villages. It was followed by Madhya Pradesh (45.8%), Rajasthan (46.3%), Manipur (43.9%), Uttar Pradesh (42.4%), Tamil Nadu (41.9%) and West Bengal (40.3%). Violence is present in every country regardless of culture, class, education, income, ethnicity and age. There is no worldwide accepted definition of violence against women. The United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of Violence against Women (1993)defines violence against women as ‘any act of gender-based violence that results in, or is likely to result in, physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to women, including threats of such acts, coercion or arbitrary deprivation of liberty, whether occurring in public or in private life.’ Domestic violence is one of the crimes against women which are linked to their inexpedient position in the society. Domestic violence refers to violence against women especially in marital homes. Violence against women is partly a result of gender relations that expects men to be superior to women. Therefore domestic violence is recognized as the epochal obstructor of the empowerment of women, with consequences of women’s health, their health health-seeking behaviour and their adoption of small family .The government and voluntary organizations are making efforts towards ending aggression against women which will be hopeless if a common man is not supportive. In urban areas there are many more causes which lead to differences in the beginning and later take the shape of domestic violence. These include ‘ more income of a working woman than her partner, her absence in the house till late night, abusing and neglecting in-laws, being more forward socially etc.
Violence against young widows has also been on a rise in India. Most often they are cursed for their husband’s death and are deprived of proper food and clothing. They are not allowed or encouraged for remarriage in most of the homes, especially in rural areas. There have been cases of molestation and rape attempts of women by other family members in nuclear families or someone in the neighbourhood. At times, women are even sexually pressured by their partner themselves against their will. They are savagely beaten and tortured for not conceiving a male child. Incidents like, ripping off a woman’s womb for killing the female foetus when she disagrees for abortion have also come to light especially in rural areas. Female foeticide and female infanticide continue to be a rising concern.

Violence against women is a hindrance towards equality, development and peace. Violence against women violates and underestimates or prevents her benefit of human rights and fundamental liberties. The habitual inability to protect and promote these rights and liberties in the cases of violence against women is a trouble in which all nations are involved and which petitions that measures must be taken. Since the Conference of Nairobi, the knowledge of the causes, consequences and reach of this violence has been considerably widened, as well as the measures to bring it to an end. In every society, to greater or minor extent, women and girls are open to maltreatment in physical, sexual or psychological aspects, with no distinction being made with regards to their income, social class, or education. Belonging to lower classes and facing economic troubles may be a cause as equally as a consequence of the violent attacks women suffer. Additionally there are many more factors which lead to deviations in the beginning and later take the shape of domestic violence.
Domestic violence has a powerful impact on women with disabilities, not only physically, but both mentally and emotionally. Symptoms may include: depression, post traumatic stress disorder, self-destructive behavior or self mutilation and low self image. If community workers and service providers become adequately disciplined on the issue of domestic violence and disability, they will be better able to empower disabled victims of domestic violence to take control of their lives and break the cycle of power and control. ‘Gender inequality holds back the growth of individuals, the development of nations and the evolution of societies to the disadvantage of both men and women’. Gender issues are not simply talking about women’s issues. Understanding gender means understanding opportunities, constraints and the impact of change as they affect both men and women. History of domestic violence dates back to the pre-historic period. Traditionally the women were viewed as property. Domestic violence against women is the most common of all forms of domestic violence. One of the most important reasons for this is the traditional and centuries old mind set of the people that fairer sex is physically and emotionally weaker than the men (Penelope Harvey & Peter Gow 1994).

Case-study

The Tandoor Murder Case of Naina Sahni in New Delhi in the year 1995 is one such dreadful incident of a woman being killed and then burnt in a Tandoor by her husband. This incidence was an outcome of suspicion of extra marital affairs of Naina Sahni which led to marital discord and domestic violence against her.

Indian theater personality and feminist Tripurari Sharma was shocked to learn that a well-educated and respected actor in her theater group was abusing his wife, also an established actress.
“He was the most helpful, cordial and endearing man,” she said. “His wife would attend rehearsals with bruises at times that she would cover up. Later, found out she was being beaten. If the actress herself had not told me, I would have never believed it. So, I think it is a myth to think that the high education and economic status will lessen the risk of violence against women.”
Domestic violence, as defined for includes violence perpetrated by intimate partners and other family members, and manifested through:

1. Physical violence

Physical injury is the most visual form of domestic violence. The scope of physical domestic/intimate partner violence includes slapping, pushing, kicking, biting, hitting, throwing objects, strangling, beating, threatening with any form of weapon, or using a weapon. It also includes traditional practices harmful to women such as female genital mutilation and wife inheritance (the practice of passing a widow, and her property, to her dead husband’s brother). Worldwide, the percentage of women who suffer serious injuries as a result of physical domestic violence tends to range from 19% – 55% Physical injuries as a result of domestic violence against women are more obvious than psychological ones, and can be more easily discerned by health professionals as well as courts of law in the context of lawful prosecution.