Family and Community Context of Intimate Partner Violence in My Hao, Vietnam Open Access

Salazar, Kelsey Renee (2015)

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Intimate partner violence is a global health problem that disproportionately burdens women. Intimate partner violence is associated with many negative health outcomes including depression, injury, and death. Men's perpetration of IPV against women is under-researched in low-income settings. In Vietnam, approximately one-third of men self-report IPV perpetration. Vietnam is also bound by a unique socio-historical context of hierarchical gender roles and intergenerational violence of fathers to sons, necessitating contextualization of men's roles in violence as both perpetrators and potential survivors of violence. This analysis sought to a) understand how family and community context of violence influence men's roles in perpetration and intervention, and b) determine how these intersecting roles could shape men's participation in anti-violence initiatives. Married Vietnamese men (n=31) ages 18-49 were recruited for this cross-sectional qualitative study. Participants were purposively sampled from each of 8 mutually exclusive categories, which were differentiated by men's experiences of IPV perpetration vs. non-perpetration and childhood exposures to violence. Each participant took part in an in-depth, semi-structured interview. Participants also completed a brief questionnaire to document demographic information such as age and education. This analysis employed grounded theory and narrative analysis as guiding methodological approaches. Findings suggest men identified certain common elements in IPV events. Their descriptions of IPV yielded a cultural narrative of how mechanisms leading to IPV are perceived in Vietnam: economic pressures lead to a man perpetrating physical IPV against his wife when she fails to complete a task, or a man engaged in alcohol consumption while bonding with other men, and perpetrated physical IPV against his wife when she challenged him. This cultural narrative presented a restrictive and incomplete view of IPV perpetration. Perpetrators minimized the effects of their violence and distanced their own perpetration from the narrative. Both perpetrators and non-perpetrators described intervening in IPV in their communities, but also expressed a sense of helplessness and futility in intervention. Future research should investigate men's perceptions of, and attitudes toward, psychological IPV. Future practice should focus on expanding men's perceptions of mechanisms leading to IPV and provide formal, effective recourse to combat men's sense of helplessness.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction 1

Impacts of Intimate Partner Violence on women 1

Impacts of IPV on children 3

Men's perpetration of IPV and experiences of childhood violence 4

IPV and childhood violence in Vietnam 5

Research Questions 6

Chapter 2: Comprehensive Review of the Literature 7

Intimate Partner Violence 7

Negative outcomes of childhood exposure to violence 8

Connections between childhood exposure to violence and adult IPV Perpetration 9

Socio-historical context of familial violence in Vietnam 11

Legal context of violence in Vietnam 13

IPV in Vietnam 14

Chapter 3: Methodology 18

Sample 18

Study Setting 18

Particpant Recruitment 19

Data Collection Procedures 20

Grounded Theory and Narrative Analysis 22

Data Analysis 23

Chapter 4: Results 26

Men's descriptions of IPV in communities 26

Men's exposure to violence in childhood 27

The cultural narrative of IPV 30

Entrenchment in the cultural narrative 35

Perpetrators vs. non-perpetrators: intersecting roles and attitudes towards IPV 37

Men's perspectives on IPV intervention 39

Chapter 5: Discussion 43

The cultural narrative of IPV and reficiation of masculinity 43

Strengths 44

Limitations 45

Implications for public health research 46

Implications for public health practice 47

Conclusions 51

References 53

Appendices 60

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