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Trauma Violence Abuse. 2011 Oct;12(4):198-219. doi: 10.1177/1524838011416378.

Victims' influence on intimate partner violence revictimization: a systematic review of prospective evidence.

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International Victimology Institute Tilburg (INTERVICT), Tilburg University, Tilburg, the Netherlands.


Foa, Cascardi, Zoellner and Feeny developed two models of women's influence on intimate partner violence (IPV), which integrate victim-related variables associated with the cessation or continuation of partner violence (i.e., repeat IPV). One of the models focuses on psychological factors while the other centers on environmental factors. Central to both models are three key factors: partner violence; psychological difficulties; and resilience. Despite the appeal of these models, empirical, prospective research that specifically tests these models appears to be lacking. This article describes a systematic review of the available literature that examines the prospective link between the three key factors of the models and the risk of IPV revictimization. A synthesis of 15 studies reveals that Foa et al.'s models of revictimization are partly supported by prior prospective research. It is beyond doubt that the key factor partner violence (involving the severity and frequency of prior IPV) is a strong predictor for IPV revictimization; the evidence regarding victims' psychological difficulties and resilience is more mixed. Findings are discussed in terms of implications for practice and research and might enable practitioners to help victims to take control of their situations and to contribute to their empowerment. The importance of future prospective research into dynamic, victim-related variables is emphasized, in order to further support Foa's models of victims' influence on IPV revictimization.

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