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Autonomy, Dependence or Culture: Examining the Impact of Resources and Socio-cultural Processes on Attitudes Towards Intimate Partner Violence in Ghana, Africa

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Abstract

Despite the high levels of domestic violence (intimate partner violence) against African women, tests of competing theories on why the practice is common in the region are quite limited. This study evaluates the effects of resources and cultural factors on attitudes Africans hold about the acceptability of gendered violence, and specifically wife beating (battering). Answers to these questions are relevant to the discourse on intimate partner violence, at least, as pertains to male-dominated societies such as those found in Africa. Drawing on national data from the Ghana Demographic and Health Survey, we explore these linkages in an African context. Our findings suggest that egalitarian decision-making and equal household contributions are associated with a reduced acceptance of abusive actions toward women. We suggest that new questions must be asked concerning the present and future role of men and women within households and the community.

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Correspondence to Baffour K. Takyi.

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We share equally in the conceptualization, data analysis, and writing of the paper. We thank Drs. Nancy B. Miller and Cheryl Elman for their helpful comments on this article.

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Mann, J.R., Takyi, B.K. Autonomy, Dependence or Culture: Examining the Impact of Resources and Socio-cultural Processes on Attitudes Towards Intimate Partner Violence in Ghana, Africa. J Fam Viol 24, 323–335 (2009). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10896-009-9232-9

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  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10896-009-9232-9

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