The language of deceit, division and dominance

R Bradford (
Visiting Professor and an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the University of Bristol, UK.


In the UK, fathers often face great difficulties maintaining a meaningful involvement in their children’s lives after parental separation. Men who are victims of partner abuse face almost universal disbelief and a dearth of provision to help them. The reality of male victims of partner abuse is kept submerged, whilst that of female victims is sometimes amplified in order to undermine fathers’ attempts to obtain court orders for child contact. Feminists dominate the academic research in these areas and hence control the narrative which shapes Governmental and judicial policy, and this maintains the status quo. By concentrating upon the recent works of one individual as an exemplar, and by deconstructing the language used and its poststructural trappings, the mechanisms which continue to propagate this institutionalised deceit are exposed.

Keywords: parental alienation, domestic abuse, poststructuralism, family court

Author Biography

  Back in the mists of time Rick Bradford obtained his degree in theoretical physics from Cambridge University and a PhD from University College London. He worked as a professional mechanical engineer in the power generation industry for nearly 40 years and is now semi-retired. Since retiring he has been a Visiting Professor and an Honorary Senior Research Fellow at the University of Bristol, Engineering Department, teaching at MSc level and supervising PhD students. He has been married since the world was a very different place and has two sons in their mid-30s. To convince himself he is still a physicist he published a book on quantum mechanics in 2020 (The Unweirding). In 2019 he published a book on male disadvantages, The Empathy Gap: Male Disadvantages and the Mechanisms of Their Neglect, under the pen name William Collins. He blogs under that name on men's issues on The Illustrated Empathy Gap.

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