Attitudes toward marital violence : individual and situational factors

Ulu, Sinan
The present study aimed at investigating the relationship between factors that are inherent in the perceiver, inherent in the situation; attitudes toward marital violence, attributions of blame in a violent incident, and judgments on what the victim should do after a violent incident. Attitudes are assessed via three beliefs that the violence can be justified, the husband is not responsible from the violence, and the blame of the violence can be attributed to the wife. Factors inherent in the perceiver (named individual factors), which are thought to be important, were defined as patriarchal and traditional beliefs about marriage and the family, hostile and benevolent sexism, beliefs about normative approval of violence, and gender. Factors inherent in the situation (named situational factors) were existence of (perceived) provocation in a violent incident, severity of the violence, and employment status of the wife and the husband. 327 METU students (176 female, 151 male) had filled out a questionnaire, in which a violent episode between a husband and a wife was described. The scenario contained manipulations on the situational factors. Other constructs were assessed via Likert type scales. Analyses revealed that the sample had held negative views of marital violence, but tend to disagree with immediate precautions like calling the police after a violent episode. Both situational and societal factors had differential effects on the dependent measures, patriarchy and hostile sexism was found to be especially related with the beliefs about wife beating whereas severity and provocation was strongly related with the attributions of blame. Existence of children had decreased the agreement with reactions that would end up the marriage. Suggestions for future research, and limitations of the study are discussed in addition to the findings.


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Citation Formats
S. Ulu, “ Attitudes toward marital violence : individual and situational factors ,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2003.