Journal of Family Violence

, Volume 25, Issue 3, pp 337–347 | Cite as

Exposure to Family Violence in Childhood and Intimate Partner Perpetration or Victimization in Adulthood: Exploring Intergenerational Transmission in Urban Thailand

  • Kent R. KerleyEmail author
  • Xiaohe Xu
  • Bangon Sirisunyaluck
  • Joseph M. Alley
Original Article


Investigators who study intimate partner violence have long recognized a relationship between exposure to violence in the family of origin and subsequent offending and victimization in the family context. This relationship holds not only for direct exposure (i.e., experiencing violence), but also for indirect exposure (i.e., witnessing violence against a parent or sibling). Typically, this relationship has been attributed to a social learning process that results in the intergenerational transmission of family violence. In this study, we explore intergenerational transmission in a sample of 816 married women in Bangkok, Thailand to determine how childhood exposure to violence in the family of origin is related to intimate partner perpetration and victimization during adulthood. Our results show that there are indeed long-term and significant effects of childhood exposure to family violence on the likelihood of Thai women’s psychological and physical intimate partner perpetration. However, these effects appear to be indirect. Additionally, our results demonstrate a direct association between childhood exposure to parental intimate partner violence and subsequent psychological and physical victimization in adulthood.


Family violence Intergenerational transmission of violence Intimate partner perpetration Intimate partner violence Thailand 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kent R. Kerley
    • 1
    Email author
  • Xiaohe Xu
    • 2
  • Bangon Sirisunyaluck
    • 3
  • Joseph M. Alley
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Justice SciencesUniversity of Alabama at BirminghamBirminghamUSA
  2. 2.Department of SociologyUniversity of Texas at San AntonioSan AntonioUSA
  3. 3.Faculty of Liberal ArtsMaejo UniversitySansai DistrictThailand
  4. 4.Department of Justice SciencesUniversity of Alabama at BirminghamBirminghamUSA

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