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Soc Sci Med. 1996 Dec;43(12):1729-42.

Credit programs, patriarchy and men's violence against women in rural Bangladesh.

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JSI Research and Training Institute, Arlington, VA 22209, USA.


Although violence by men against women in Bangladesh occurs in most cases within the home, in a larger sense it does not originate in the home nor persist only within the home. It is simply one element in a system that subordinates women through social norms that define women's place and guide their conduct. This paper uses ethnographic and structured survey data from a study in rural Bangladesh to explore the relationship between domestic violence against women and their economic and social dependence. It describes some of the common situations in which violence against women occurs in Bangladeshi society, analyzes its larger context, and identifies factors that appear to lessen its incidence in this particular socio-economic setting. The study findings suggest that group-based credit programs can reduce men's violence against women by making women's lives more public. The problem of men's violence against women is deeply rooted, however, and the authors argue that much more extensive interventions will be needed to significantly undermine it.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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