The Contribution of Mental Health and Gender Attitudes to Intimate Partner Violence in the Context of War and Displacement: Evidence from a Multi-Informant Couple Survey in Iraq

Citation:

Goessmann, Katharina, Hawkar Ibrahim, Laura Bebra Saupe, Azad Ali Ismail, and Frank Neuner. 2019. "The Contribution of Mental Health and Gender Attitudes to Intimate Partner Violence in the Context of War and Displacement: Evidence from a Multi-Informant Couple Survey in Iraq." Social Science & Medicine 237.

Authors: Katharina Goessmann, Hawkar Ibrahim, Laura Bebra Saupe, Azad Ali Ismail, Frank Neuner

Abstract:

Rationale: Intimate partner violence is a prevalent issue in refugee and internally displaced populations in postwar and migration settings including camps in the Middle East. In this context, partner violence has been associated with war-related trauma, camp factors, individual characteristics, and gender attitudes. 
 
Objective: With a dual-informant survey among a sample of Iraqi couples residing in a camp for displaced people in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (N = 92) this study investigated the relationship between war-related psychopathology, attitudes towards women, and male-perpetrated partner violence. 
 
Method: Moderated regression analysis was applied using information from both partners to predict partner violence reported by wives. 
 
Results: Over 58% of the women in this sample reported past-year exposure to partner violence. Further analyses revealed significant main effects of men's self-reported psychopathology (posttraumatic stress disorder and depression) and their own gender attitudes on partner violence. In a multivariate regression, moderating effects were found, as higher psychopathology levels and inequitable gender attitudes in men interacted in the prediction of male-perpetrated partner violence. 
 
Conclusions: This study highlights the high prevalence of partner violence among Iraqi displaced women. In addition, the results show an interplay of several violence-impelling factors in war-affected men. This emphasizes the importance of addressing both mental health issues and gender attitudes in the efforts to reduce or end violence against women in post-war settings.

Keywords: Iraq, Intimate partner violence, forced displacement, traumatic, experiences, mental health, gender attitudes, moderated regression analysis

Topics: Displacement & Migration, IDPs, Refugees, Refugee/IDP Camps, Domestic Violence, Gender, Health, Mental Health, PTSD, Trauma, Post-Conflict Regions: MENA, Asia, Middle East Countries: Iraq

Year: 2019

© 2020 CONSORTIUM ON GENDER, SECURITY & HUMAN RIGHTSLEGAL STATEMENT All photographs used on this site, and any materials posted on it, are the property of their respective owners, and are used by permission. Photographs: The images used on the site may not be downloaded, used, or reproduced in any way without the permission of the owner of the image. Materials: Visitors to the site are welcome to peruse the materials posted for their own research or for educational purposes. These materials, whether the property of the Consortium or of another, may only be reproduced with the permission of the owner of the material. This website contains copyrighted materials. The Consortium believes that any use of copyrighted material on this site is both permissive and in accordance with the Fair Use doctrine of 17 U.S.C. § 107. If, however, you believe that your intellectual property rights have been violated, please contact the Consortium at info@genderandsecurity.org.