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Domestic Violence ‒ Johnny Depp And Amber Heard Case

Written by: Mayra Cardozo, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.


At first glance, the judgment of the defamation lawsuit filed by actor Johnny Depp against his ex-partner, Amber Heard, seems something particular. Nonetheless makes us reflect on several aspects surrounding domestic violence and the judgments in these matters around the world.

The judgment's object in the Case Johnny Deep x Amber Heard is a civil action for damages brought by Johnny Deep against his ex-wife. He is asking for 50 million dollars in compensation for damages suffered to his image.

This conflict has a significant background.

They were married for two years and then separated, having a very troubled divorce. Amber obtained a restraining order against Johnny Depp after accusing him of 12 episodes of physical assault throughout their marriage in the divorce action. At the end of the case, the judge said enough evidence to prove that Amber was the victim of multiple and consequential assaults. As a result, Amber won the divorce action and received moral damages of 7 million dollars.

In 2018, after the divorce action was closed, Amber wrote an article for the American newspaper "The Washington Post," declaring herself a survivor of domestic violence. As a result of that article, Johnny Depp claimed losses arising from the loss of numerous film contracts and commitments.

In response to the article, Johnny Depp filed the present action claiming to be defamed by Amber Heard. In the suit, he argues that he was a victim of violence and that his ex-wife suffers from Borderline Personality Disorder. He also claimed that she physically assaulted him and defecated him on the bed and that the child born by surrogacy was of another parentage.

Amber Heard contested the lawsuit and filed a counterclaim seeking damages for $100 million. According to Amber, she is a survivor of domestic violence. She reaffirmed that she was physically, morally, and psychologically assaulted several times, detailing several episodes of aggression during the constant use of cocaine by Depp, and claimed to be a victim of sexual violence when he inserted a bottle into her genitals.

The United States is one of the most violent countries for women. Data shows that 1 in 4 women experience domestic violence, and 1 in 6 women experience sexual violence at some point in their lives.

We are talking about a highly patriarchal and misogynist country like others worldwide. Nevertheless, we observed similarities between worldwide judgments involving domestic and sexual violence cases against women.

I can even cite some similarities in the Johnny Depp trial with other trials involving gender violence, regardless of merit:

Johnny Deep claimed that his ex-wife had severe personality disorders ‒ such as Borderline personality disorder ‒ as a primary form of his defense. The purpose was to claim that Amber was violent and that he was the victim of the aggression. During the trial, he even brought a psychologist as a witness so that he could confirm this.

Bringing the idea of "crazy and aggressive woman" as a form of victimization is a classical allegation of the aggressor in most cases related to gender violence.

The argument centered on questioning women's sanity as a central point aligns with one of the most traditional forms of oppression against women: gaslighting.

Depp argues that his addiction to alcohol and drugs was because he was the victim of an abusive relationship on the part of Amber ‒ bringing another common trait of patriarchy since the woman "would be primarily responsible for all the harm caused to the family." humanity." That is, she would also be responsible for his drug addiction.

Another argument is Amber's alleged lack of fidelity to tarnish her image as a "wife," bringing another common feature of patriarchal society, which is to destroy the victim's image because she would be a "vulgar woman."

In conclusion, we can see that the judgments related to gender violence have the same patriarchal arguments worldwide. These show the need to have legal procedures to protect women against revictimization.

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Mayra Cardozo, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine Mayra is one of the pioneers in Brazil in feminist coaching and is something she is passionate about. Despite being a lawyer and partner in a famous office in Brazil and a university professor of Human Rights, these were not enough for her. She always wants to make a difference in people's lives. It was then that she discovered her passion and became a life coach; she has a brilliant curriculum involving the best national and international courses. The objective of your work is to empower human beings to be their best version and help them emancipate themselves from socially constructed beliefs to be their essence. Her approach is different. It aims to unite the coaching process with the development of an inclusive and emancipatory awareness.



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