Contextual Influences on Domestic Violence in Uttar Pradesh, India

Rob Stephenson, Johns Hopkins University
Michael Koenig, Johns Hopkins University
Jackie Campbell, Johns Hopkins University

Previous research on the determinants of domestic violence in developing countries has been limited by an almost exclusive focus upon individual-level factors from the perspective of female respondents. By incorporating the effects of community- as well as individual-level variables, and considering domestic violence from the perspective of husbands, the present study makes new and important contributions to the field. Using multi-level modeling for a representative sample of 4582 husbands from Uttar Pradesh, North India, our study explores the roles of individual (demographic, socioeconomic) and contextual (socioeconomic development, norms regarding wife beating, and district-level crime rates) factors in shaping women's risks of violence. Our results show strong influences on domestic violence at the individual, household and community levels. Community attitudes towards violence, district-level crime rates, socioeconomic factors, and the husband's previous exposure to violence in the home all exert strong effects upon the likelihood of domestic violence.

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Presented in Session 103: Contextual Effects on Health and Mortality in India