1 pages66 viewsSummer 2010
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•Nar row: focus on physical injur ies
•Broad: psychological, verbal, spiritual, and economic abuse included
•Gender neutral/specific: spousal abuse (more inclusive) vs. wife abuse (from feminist
•Nearly 30% of mar r ied women or common-law relationship have been physically abused
•2/3 reported they were abused more than once
•Yet mostly underreported
•More likely to be beaten by your partner than anyone else in society
Who are more likely to be victims?
•Abor iginal women
•Economically disadvantaged women
•Living in rural or isolated area
•Immigrant women (for cultural bar r iers and SES disadvantages)
•Cohabiting, separating and divorcing women
•More common if wife has higher income or only a wife has a job
•Feminist theor y: abuse as husband’s defense mechanism in their fear of women’s
increasing economic and social independence
•Social exchange theor y: tradeoff of reward and penalty
•Symbolic interaction theory: couples fail to negotiate a non-violent pattern to deal with
their conf licts
Why do they still stay?
•Committed to the wife/mother role: identity issue (failure of gender role playing), for the
sake of children
•Fear of the consequence of leaving: poverty, less skill, isolation, short of knowledge and
Feeling powerless: mental problem of depression and low self esteem
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