High-Earning Indian Women Often Fall Prey to Domestic Violence: Study
BANGALORE: Today, most of the Indian women who are well educated have experienced financial independence. But, there is also a dark side to such freedom as they are often at higher risk of experiencing frequent and severe intimate partner violence than those who stays as a housewife, a new study has claimed.
Abigail Weitzman, a graduate student at New York University, looked at data from the female centric module of India's National Family Health Survey collected between 2005 and 2006. This module contains data from a nationally representative sample of women aged 15 to 49 and includes nine variables pertaining to IPV. It also asks a number of questions about women's current employment, relative earnings, and access to other money. Weitzman looked only at data from married women and explored the occurrence, frequency, and severity of violence.
Weitzman exclaimed, “Our study supports the theory known as gender deviance neutralization. It suggests that a woman’s superior resources would be viewed as gender deviant and a man would use violence to gain power or maintain control in the relationship,” reports IANS.
The researcher comes to a conclusion that as compared to women with less education than their husbands, highly educated women face 1.4 times the risk of IPV, 1.54 times the risk of frequent violence, and 1.36 times the risk of severe violence. And also programmes like microfinance and vocational training for women should be able to provide legal and psychological help to the women at risk.
"In global development efforts, there is a large emphasis on women's employment and education. My research suggests that there can be a backlash, including violence, toward women who attain greater education or earnings than their husbands," Weitzman said. "Finding a solution will be tricky. Our response should not be to stop educating and employing women, but nor should we plow ahead without recognizing this may put them at greater risk, and making changes to help protect them."
(With Agency Inputs)
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