If you want to read the series in order (not entirely necessary), then Read "Volume One" here. Improving your crime awareness is the first volume in this ongoing collection of crime awareness posts. Self defense is going to be covered in the following volume, and will focus on taking the defensive when you've run out of all other options.
It's absolutely necessary to know that no matter what, your first option should be to run away. Fight or flight reflexes are natural reactions to attacks and other incidents that leave you fearful for your safety. The only time it's absolutely necessary to fight is when you have no other options. It would be irresponsible to encourage anybody to attempt fighting an assailant when running is also the key to your safety. There are always stipulations to these incidents though, so no matter what using good judgement and common sense should be top priorities.