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Title: A basket of resources : women's resistance to domestic violence in Calcutta
Author: Sen, Purna
ISNI:       0000 0001 3393 7092
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 1997
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Male violence against women expresses power and a search for control; it harms and limits women's lives. Ending such violence increases women's autonomy. Resistance is essential to end this violence. How do women resist? How is violence resolved? These are my central research questions. Domestic violence research tends to focus on western societies; development studies literature says little on domestic violence. My research contributes towards addressing these gaps by investigating women's resistance to domestic violence in Calcutta. I interviewed forty-seven women and fifteen organisations and had meetings with key informants, monitored local papers and attended seminars. I analyse resistance in terms of incident and practice resistance. The first refers to actions taken in response to an assault and the second involves other challenge(s) to the legitimacy of male violence. I explore ways in which women seek support to resist violence: to whom they turn, whether support is given and how widespread is knowledge of abuse. I investigate the resolution of violence through women leaving, men leaving and violence stopping in an ongoing relationship. I analyse the associations between economic, social and political factors and the resolution of domestic violence. I use women's own accounts and statistical methods for my analysis. Important differences emerge between sexual and physical violence. My findings on physical violence include: men use violence to seek control over women but that control is widely resisted; alliances of women are significant correlates of resolution, as are post-elementary education and arranged marriages. Employment and organisational contacts together are strongly associated with women who separate from violent men. Combinations of these enhance women's resistance to violence. Multi-variate analyses of resolution lead me to conclude that women need a basket of resources, including organisational support and education, to make the transition from violent to violence-free lives.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Sociology