Gender and Behaviour

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Gender-based violence: Exploring the concept through the eyes of abused married women running head: Gender-based violence

Makondelele Radzilani-Makatu


Gender-based violence is both a human rights violation and a public health problem affecting as many as one out of every three women worldwide. It is also an extreme manifestation on gender inequity, targeting women and girls because of their subordinate social status in society. This study explored gender-bases violence through the eyes of Tshivenda and Xitsonga speaking women in abusive marriages. The study adopted qualitative approach and guided by feminist theory to understand the lens through which women in abusive marriages share their views pertaining to gender-based violence. Ten purposively selected married women were informants. Semi-structured face-to-face interviews were considered for data collection. The interview data were thematically analysed. Findings suggest the women’s views, challenges that they encounter, reasons for staying in abusive marriages and strategies for coping with abusive marriages. The study concluded that, irrespective of challenges they encounter, women who stay in abusive marriages are conscious about their decisions, they have reasons and adopted coping strategies.

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