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References Examining Assaults by Women on Their Spouses or Male Partners: An Updated Annotated Bibliography

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This annotated bibliography describes 343 scholarly investigations (270 empirical studies and 73 reviews) demonstrating that women are as physically aggressive as men (or more) in their relationships with their spouses or opposite-sex partners. The aggregate sample size in the reviewed studies exceeds 440,850 people.
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... These experimental results appear to support the construct of 'gamma bias's -a proposed cognitive bias in which male issues/achievements are minimised while female issues/achievements are magnified as demonstrated by Seager and Barry (2019), who also provided other examples to support gamma bias. One example was the frequent portrayal of men as the perpetrators of intimate partner violence against women; when in fact, males and females are sometimes equally likely to be perpetrators (Archer, 2000;Fiebert, 2014;. Therefore, given the importance of men's health issues and the potential implications that their lack of recognition might have, the current paper presents and discusses six new streams of evidence that confirm the existence of bias against men's issues within the UN and WHO. ...
... However, the report does not mention (a) engaging with boys and men about violence against other boys and men, nor does it mention (b) engaging girls and women about violence against boys and men. The reason 'a' and 'b' should be considered is that violence against boys and men from other boys and men, and violence against boys and men from adult women, are both known problems (Archer, 2000;Breiding et al., 2014;Costa et al., 2015;Fiebert, 2014;Stemple & Meyer, 2014;Stemple et al., 2017). Lack of recognition of 'a' and 'b' suggests an institutional-level bias that males are almost always the perpetrators of violence and females are almost always the victims, which would be consistent with the experimental findings that women are often viewed as victims (Reynolds et al., 2020). ...
... However, violence against men is also an issue. For example, assumptions that males rarely experience intimate partner violence (Archer, 2000;Fiebert, 2014; and sexual abuse/victimisation (Breiding et al., 2014;Stemple et al., 2017;Stemple & Meyer, 2014) are false. ...
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Males fare worse than females on many health outcomes, but more attention, particularly at a national level, is given to women’s issues. This apparent paradox might be explained by gamma bias or a similar gender bias construct. Such potential biases require exploration. The purpose of the current paper is to present six streams of evidence that illustrate a bias against men’s issues within the United Nations (UN) and World Health Organization (WHO). First, the UN’s sustainable development goal on ‘gender equality’ is exclusive to females. Second, the UN observes nine International Days for women’s issues/achievements and one day for men’s issues/achievements. Third, the UN operates 69 Twitter accounts dedicated to women’s issues, culminating in 328,251 tweets since 2008. The UN does not operate a Twitter account for men’s issues. Fourth, female words (e.g., ‘women’) appear more frequently than male words (e.g., ‘men’) in documents archived in the UN and WHO databases, indicating more attention to women’s issues. Fifth, in WHO reports where similar use of male and female words might be expected (e.g., gender and health reports), female words appear more frequently. Sixth, more female than male words appear in the Bulletin of the World Health Organization, with articles on women’s health more frequently non-original research (e.g., editorials). Overall, because the UN and WHO are the causal agents directly responsible for the outcomes assessed, the findings reveal a bias against men’s issues within these organisations. The findings support the construct of gamma bias. Ways to reduce this bias are discussed.
... more recent surveys (e.g., Esquivel-Santoveña et al., 2013;Hellemans et al., 2014;Tillyer and Wright, 2014). The annotated bibliography by Fiebert (2014) describes 343 scholarly investigations (270 empirical studies and 73 reviews) demonstrating that women are as physically aggressive as men (or more) in their relationships with their spouses or opposite-sex partners. In relation to this and at an international level, women are gradually being arrested and prosecuted as perpetrators of IPV (e.g., Henning and Feder, 2004;Henning et al., 2005;Henning et al., 2009). ...
... The CTS is the most widely used measure of IPV but is also the most criticized (Straus, 2012). One of the primary reasons this measure has received such attention from critics is that when it is used, it generally finds "gender symmetry" in the perpetration of IPV (e.g., Archer, 2000;Fiebert, 2014;Hamby, 2016;Lehrner and Allen, 2014), even in agency-and clinical-level violence cases (e.g., Moffitt et al., 2001). These findings appear inconsistent with studies using data from criminal justice or medical sources and have led to criticism from feminist (and other) researchers, who have sought to negate the CTS findings by criticizing the methodology. ...
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Intimate partner violence (IPV) is a social, criminal and widespread problem. Research in the last decades has shown that this phenomenon has different protagonists and that both men and women can be victims and/or perpetrators in their intimate relationships. The present study aimed to capture the past year and lifetime prevalence rates of victimization and perpetration of different types of IPV reported by heterosexual Portuguese men. The participants (N=1556) were recruited online and completed measures of IPV. They were categorized as being a victim only (2.7%), perpetrator only (3.9%), involved in bidirectional IPV (73.7%) or not involved in IPV (19.7%). The differences between those categories were explored. The implications for research and public policy are discussed.
... Several studies regard Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) [12][13][14][15], but the specific issue of sex differences in all types of elder abuse has not generated much attention. In this respect some international studies suggested that older women are more likely to be abused than older men [4,9,10,16,17], whereas, conversely, others authors found that men are, in some cases, more likely to be abused than women [18][19][20]. ...
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Background Elder abuse is a growing public health question among policy makers and practitioners in many countries. Research findings usually indicate women as victims, whereas male elder abuse still remains under-detected and under-reported. We aimed to investigate the prevalence, severity and chronicity of abuse (psychological, physical, physical injury, sexual, and financial) against older men, and to scrutinize factors (e.g. demographics) associated with high chronicity of any abuse. Methods Randomly selected older men (n = 1908) aged 60–84 years from seven European cities (Ancona, Athens, Granada, Kaunas, Stuttgart, Porto, Stockholm) were interviewed in 2009 via a cross-sectional study concerning abuse exposure during the past 12 months. Results Findings suggested that prevalence of abuse towards older men varied between 0.3% (sexual) and 20.3% (psychological), with severe acts between 0.2% (sexual) and 8.2% (psychological). On the whole, higher chronicity values were for injury, followed by psychological, financial, physical, and sexual abuse. Being from Sweden, experiencing anxiety and having a spouse/cohabitant/woman as perpetrator were associated with a greater “risk” for high chronicity of any abuse. For men, severity and chronicity of abuse were in some cases relatively high. Conclusions Abuse towards older men, in the light of severe and repeated acts occurring, should be a source of concern for family, caring staff, social work practice and policy makers, in order to develop together adequate prevention and treatment strategies.
... Mainstream studies suggest that women sustain more severe injuries from IPV perpetrated by men than vice versa; however, the physical, psychological, and financial consequences of women-perpetrated IPV toward men are neither rare nor insignificant (Desmarais et al., 2012b). In fact, several studies have suggested that men and women experience IPV in similar proportions when severity of injury is not taken into account (Desmarais et al., 2012b;Fiebert, 2014). For example, colleagues (2012a, 2012b) reported pooled estimates of IPV between women and men across 10 years and found that 1 in 4 women (23.1%) and 1 in 5 men (19.3%) have experienced physical violence in an intimate relationship. ...
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Most Indigenous intimate partner violence (IPV) research and interventions are geared toward women, while the experiences of Indigenous men as survivors of IPV are not well investigated or understood. Indigenous men are typically portrayed as perpetrators of violence yet very seldom as survivors of violence, although they experience disproportionately high rates of violence, including IPV, when compared to non-Indigenous men. Our community-based participatory research, conducted in partnership with First Nations communities in Northern Ontario, Canada, completed in 2019, identified this bias as a major barrier for Indigenous men to disclose IPV in a health service setting, where a safe space and support should be available. The primary health care providers involved in this study reported awareness of serious abuse perpetrated against First Nations men in heterosexual relationships. However, they also cited insufficient preparedness within the primary care system to respond to the needs of these men, including significant gaps in culturally safe services. These findings warrant attention and action. We offer recommendations for health and social services and community organizations to help address, in culturally safe ways, IPV experienced by Indigenous men and its effects on families and communities.
... Even fewer studies have focused on male victims (McMahon and Baker 2011;Kramer 2017), who, rooted in constructions of masculinity, are generally less likely to disclose sexual abuse (Alaggia 2005;Sorsoli, Kia-Keating, and Grossman 2008;Tjaden and Thoennes 2000), especially by women. Fiebert (2014) notes these challenges in his annotated bibliography of scholarship that explores relationships characterised by female perpetrators and male victims. All 95 of these studies either take the form of literature reviews or quantitative analyses, and most of them sample the general population rather than focus on male victims directly. ...
Article
Most research on sexual abuse examines the role of men in the perpetration of abuse against women and children. Few studies have explored victims' accounts of Female-perpetrated Sexual Abuse (FSA), and even fewer have focused on male FSA victims. However, the limited research available demonstrates that there are particular conditions that make it possible for men to identify as FSA victims. This is the first study of its kind that explores the possibilities for such self-identification by investigating how male victims negotiate masculinity and victimhood in the context of FSA in the Global South. As part of a larger study on FSA, we conducted semi-structured interviews with five culturally diverse South African men who self-identified as experiencing sexual abuse as children or adolescents by women, and analysed the data using a critical discourse analysis. We demonstrate precisely how contemporary constructions of gender and sexuality both produce and constrain possibilities for men who report childhood or adolescent FSA to identify as victims. These constructions are anchored in accounts that emphasise hierarchies of vulnerability, body betrayal, emasculation, preconceptions of 'normal' sexuality, the eroticisation of the female offender and 'triumphant' variants of masculinity. Such accounts present just how male victimhood becomes possible to 'detect' and challenge contemporary constructions of sexual violence, in turn suggesting new possibilities for understanding the conditions under which normative gender roles implicated in violence are sustained or disrupted.
... This is quite different from the results of most other studies using optional sampling (Li and Jin 2012;Zhao, He, and Zhu 2011;Zhou and Chen 2015). Similar to some studies, it was found that the victimization of males and females in marital conflicts follows a gender-symmetric pattern, with males and females equally likely to commit violence (Fiebert 2014;Kimmel 2002;Ma 2013), and just female-on-male violence viewed as more acceptable. Violence against men is mainly reflected in psychological violence. ...
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Analyzing 1268 stratified random samples from one of the biggest cities in China’s Pearl River Delta with the zero-inflated Poisson model, this study identifies the factors associated with the onset and severity of spousal violence by males and females separately under the social exchange perspective. The results indicate that spousal violence follows gender symmetry in migrant families, and violence against men is mainly reflected in psychological violence. The new pattern of “cradle snatching” makes men fully protected in family relationships. However, women’s education level and economic independence do not represent a protective factor against violence from husbands. Patriarchal cognition is deeply rooted in migrant families, even though the family pattern has been changed and women’s status has improved in China. Young couples should contribute to the family according to their own abilities, and should not make either one feel wronged.
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Canadian research examining the overlap between Black women's victimization and criminalization is sparse. This qualitative study addresses this gap by examining the ways in which criminalized Black women's intersecting identities of race, class, and gender influence how they perceive, experience, and respond to intimate partner violence (IPV). Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 25 Black women who experienced IPV. The findings focus on the women (15) who were also charged with an IPV-related offense. Critical race feminism was employed to analyze their narratives. This research has implications for policy, practice, and future research with Black women who are victimized and criminalized.
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Recent debates surrounding intimate partner violence (IPV) have focused on its gender symmetry and gender-oriented nature. These debates center on findings from various data sources, like victimization or self-reported surveys and police-based reports. Data by Statistics Canada, from 1999 to 2014, has shown that the prevalence of IPV is similar for male and female victims, except for sexual assaults. However, there has been a paucity of studies on the severity and risk factors of IPV against men by female partners. Thus, this paper examines the severity of and risk factors for physical IPV against heterosexual men in Canada using the General Social Survey (Victimization) data of 2014. This study revealed that there is a symmetry in the experiences of physical violence between male and female victims. This study also revealed that male victims experience more severe violence than female victims. Using binary logistic regression analysis, years of dwelling together, the victim’s age, childhood victimization, and marijuana use were found to predict physical IPV against heterosexual men. This paper concludes with suggestions about how these predicting factors can be used to identify male victims and the need for a more inclusive approach toward addressing IPV, which should include male victims.
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The concept of intimate partner violence (IPV) implies gender-neutrality in the experiences of violence. Gender symmetry in IPV implies similar numbers of men and women victims. Data from the 2014 Canadian General Social Survey (Victimization) indicate that 262,267 men and 159,829 women were victims of self-reported spousal violence over the past 5 years. Despite the prevailing notion that IPV predominantly affects female victims, these data suggest that men too are victims of IPV, especially in heterosexual relationships. However, very few qualitative studies have shed light on heterosexual male victims’ experiences of IPV. This article describes some of these experiences and also seeks to understand the effects of IPV on male victims. Qualitative data collected through semi-structured interviews with 16 male victims of IPV were used to explore their experience of physical IPV and psychological IPV, as well as the consequences of such abuse. Results revealed common themes pertaining to the type of abuses (i.e., physical, controlling and threatening behaviours, and verbal abuse) male victims experienced and the subsequent physical and psychological impacts. This study identifies the need to distinguish between physically and psychologically abused male victims of IPV.
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English In a survey of 1577 Asian Americans, the average partner abuse prevalence was 16.4 percent, that is, 22.4 percent among Vietnamese, 21.8 percent among Filipinos, 19.5 percent among Indians, 19.5 percent among Koreans, 9.7 percent among Japanese and 9.7 percent among Chinese. Asian partner abuse victims are likely to seek help from medical professionals or friends. French Cette étude qui porte sur 1577 Asiatiques Américains révèle que le pourcentage d'abus commis au sein des groupes étudiés était de 16,4 pour cent, et se répartissait comme suit: 22,4 pour cent chez les Vietnamiens, 21,8 pour cent chez les Philippins, 19,5 pour cent chez les Indiens, 19,5 pour cent chez les Coréens, 9,7 pour cent chez les Japonais et 9,7 pour cent chez les Chinois. Les victimes asiatiques d'abus de la part du conjoint sont enclines à chercher de l'aide dans le milieu médical ou auprès d'amis. Spanish En una encuesta de 1,577 asiático americanos, el porcentaje de prevalencia de abuso de pareja fue de 16.4 percent, el cual estima que el 22.4 percent se da entre vietnamitas, el 21.8 percent entre filipinos, 19.5 percent entre indios, 19.5 percent entre coreanos, 9.7 percent entre japoneses y 9.7 percent entre chinos. Es probable que las víctimas asiáticas de abuso de pareja busquen ayuda de profesionales médicos o amigos.
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This study examines three areas of intimate partner violence in a conservative Christian denomination, noting gender differences in patterns of abuse among men and women. Specifically investigating patterns of victimization, the study identifies women as targets of intimate terrorism. Women who experienced escalating violence and sexual violence also reported emotional abuse, controlling behaviors, and symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) that are typical of intimate terrorism. Women who endured potentially lethal violence had the added associated action of calling the police or 911. Although factors that are associated with male victimization also feature controlling behaviors, the control is not associated with PTSD or associated fear behaviors that are typical of intimate terrorism.
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This article compares the rates of physical violence in black families from the First National Family Violence Survey, conducted in 1975, with the rates from the 1985 replication. It also compares these rates to the rates for white families in the same surveys. Both studies used nationally representative samples (2,143 families in 1975 and 6,002 in 1985). There were 147 black families in the 1975 survey and 576 in the 1985 sample. The rate of severe violence toward black women declined 43%—a statistically significant change. Similarly, the ratio of severe violence toward women for blacks to whites declined from 1975 to 1985. The rates of severe violence toward black children and men were higher (48% for children and 42% for men), but the differences were not statistically significant. The black-to-white ratio for severe violence toward children and men increased between 1975 and 1985. Explanations are explored for the unchanged rate of violence toward black children, compared to a significant decline in the general population, and the decline in the rate of violence toward black women, compared to no change in the general population.
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The paper demonstrates the use of couple data as a methodological tool. Using Straus's Conflict Tactics Scale as an example, it is shown that couple data may be used for the evaluation of scale items and for the assessment of the validity of frequency estimates of violence and its relationship with other variables. The results provide clear evidence that aggregate husband-wife data cannot substitute for couple data.
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In post-Renaissance France and England, society ridiculed and humiliated husbands thought to be battered and/or dominated by their wives (Steinmetz, 1977-78). In France, for instance, a "battered" husband was trotted around town riding a donkey backwards while holding its tail. In England, "abused" husbands were strapped to a cart and paraded around town, all the while subjected to the people's derision and contempt. Such "treatments" for these husbands arose out of the patriarchal ethos where a husband was expected to dominate his wife, making her, if the occasion arose, the proper target for necessary marital chastisement; not the other way around (Dobash & Dobash, 1979). Although the patriarchal view supporting a husband's complete dominance of his wife persisted into the twentieth century (E. Pleck, 1987), during the latter half of this century, we find a definite shift in people's attitudes toward marital relationships. Beginning in the 1970s, for instance, advocates like Del Martin (1976) and Erin Pizzey (Pizzey 1974; Pizzey & Shapiro, 1982) exposed the "hidden" secret of domestic violence. As a result, terms like "domestic violence," "domestic abuse," and "battered wife" have found their way into our everyday speech. Finally, society seems to be taking the issue of domestic violence against women seriously and looking for solutions to stem if not to end the violence. Most of the early research dealing with domestic violence focused solely on the female victims and the social factors that supported the victimization of women (Smith, 1989). Consequently, a voluminous literature now exists that portrays domestic violence as a unitary social phenomenon stemming from a patriarchal social order where women are portrayed as the victims and men perceived as the perpetrators (Dobash & Dobash, 1979). Such research has had a significant impact upon the evolution of recent changes in civil law, enforcement of criminal law, and the ways law enforcement and social agencies respond to the needs of battered wives (see Victim Support, 1992).
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The present study investigated the prevalence of mutual violence, violent attitudes and mental health symptoms among students in Botswana, Africa. The sample consisted of 562 university students from Botswana University in heterosexual relationships. Participants completed self-report surveys that asked about violent attitudes, partner violence, controlling behaviours, and mental health symptoms. Results were that respondent and respondent partner's violent attitudes, partner violence and controlling behaviours were significantly related, revealing the mutuality of aggression within couples. Males reported higher violent attitudes but were just as likely as females to report controlling behaviours and physical partner perpetration. Multivariate analyses found that violent victimisation (physical and sexual), controlling behaviours and violent attitudes were significantly related to violent perpetration. Violent attitudes of the partner contributed to the respondent's violent perpetration of the partner. Respondents were likely to report more mental health symptoms if they experienced sexual violence and controlling behaviours by their intimate partners. Similarly, mental health symptoms of the respondents were associated with the partner's violent attitudes.
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Data from 280 first-year college students in serious dating relationships were examined. Differences in relationship dimensions, negotiation styles and use of coping strategies were identified between participants in violent and non-violent relationships and between males and females. Multivariate analysis of covariance techniques revealed significant effects for gender and use of violence on the dependent research variables. No interaction effects were noted. Those in violent dating relationships reported more relationship conflict and greater ambivalence toward the relationship. Partners in violent relationships more frequently used the negotiation styles of negative affect, indirect appeal and emotional appeal. They also more often relied on confrontation and escape/avoidance as coping strategies. When negotiating, women more often used bargaining and emotional appeal. With respect to coping, women were more likely to use social support while men relied more often on self-control and escape/avoidance techniques. Implications of these findings are discussed.