is the homicide of a member of a family, due to the perpetrators' belief that the victim has brought shame or dishonor upon the family, or has violated the principles of a community or a religion, usually for reasons such as refusing to enter an arranged marriage, being in a relationship that is disapproved by their family, having sex outside marriage, becoming the victim of rape, dressing in ways which are deemed inappropriate, engaging in non-heterosexual relations or renouncing a faith.
Honor killings are acts of vengeance, usually death, committed by male family members against female family members, who are held to have brought dishonor upon the family.
In most countries data on honor killings is not collected systematically, and many of these killings are reported by the families as suicides or accidents and registered as such.
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Women for the tribe were considered a factory for making men.
The honour killing is not a means to control sexual power or behavior.
It also comments that the practice is not related to a feudal societal structure, "there are also perpetrators who are well-educated university graduates.
Of all those surveyed, 60 percent are either high school or university graduates or at the very least, literate." In contemporary times, the changing cultural and economic status of women has also been used to explain the occurrences of honor killings.
A woman can be targeted by (individuals within) her family for a variety of reasons, including: refusing to enter into an arranged marriage, being the victim of a sexual assault, seeking a divorce—even from an abusive husband—or (allegedly) committing adultery.
The mere perception that a woman has behaved in a way that "dishonors" her family is sufficient to trigger an attack on her life.
The distinctive nature of honor killings is the collective nature of the crime – many members of an extended family plan the act together, sometimes through a formal "family council".
Another significant feature is the connection of honor killings to the control of individual's behavior, in particular in regard to sexuality/marriage, by the family as a collective.
The way through which women in honor-based societies are considered to bring dishonor to men is often through their sexual behavior.
Indeed, violence related to female sexual expression has been documented since Ancient Rome, when the pater familias had the right to kill an unmarried sexually active daughter or an adulterous wife.
Women in largely patriarchal cultures who have gained economic independence from their families go against their male-dominated culture.