In 2002, Widney Brown, advocacy director for Human Rights Watch, argued that there are similarities between the dynamics of crimes of passion and honor killings, stating that: "crimes of passion have a similar dynamic [to honor killings] in that the women are killed by male family members and the crimes are perceived as excusable or understandable".
Historically, children had few protections from violence by their parents, and in many parts of the world, this is still the case.
Traditionally, domestic violence (DV) was mostly associated with physical violence.
India has, in recent decades, made efforts to curtail dowry violence: the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act (PWDVA) was enacted in 2005, following years of advocacy and activism by the women's organizations.
Crimes of passion in Latin America, a region which has a history of treating such killings with extreme leniency, have also come to international attention.
Domestic murders include stoning, bride burning, honor killings, and dowry deaths.
Globally, the victims of domestic violence are overwhelmingly women, and women tend to experience more severe forms of violence.
It is now recognized as one of the most lethal forms of DV; yet, because of the lack of external injuries, and the lack of social awareness and medical training in regard to it, strangulation has often been a hidden problem.
Homicide as a result of domestic violence makes up a greater proportion of female homicides than it does male homicides.
In some countries, domestic violence is often seen as justified, particularly in cases of actual or suspected infidelity on the part of the woman, and is legally permitted.
Research has established that there exists a direct and significant correlation between a country's level of gender equality and rates of domestic violence.
[...] Indeed, in the case of violence against wives, there is a widespread belief that women provoke, can tolerate or even enjoy a certain level of violence from their spouses." The convention seeks to put an end to the toleration, in law or in practice, of violence against women and DV.
In its explanatory report it acknowledges the long tradition of European countries of ignoring, de jure or de facto, these forms of violence.
Domestic violence can also involve violence against children, parents, or the elderly, and may be done for self-defense.