Marital Conflict and Violence in Korean-American Families

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This study explores power relationships in marriage, marital conflict and conjugal violence among 256 Korean families in the U.S. The analysis focuses on assaults by husbands upon their wives, as these acts represent the serious problem of domestic violence. Couples are classified into four types: male dominant, equalitarian, divided power, and female dominant. The findings show that violence is highest among male dominant couples who experience a significant level of marital conflict. Fifty-two percent of husbands among the male dominant couples committed at least one or more acts of physical assault against their wives in a year, which is more than three times the number committed by men of the equalitarian couples, even though both types experienced a similar amount of conflict. The study suggests that since the equalitarian couple type is associated with low rates of marital conflict and violence, policy and intervention programs that foster egalitarian attitudes are crucial in reducing violence and strengthening the family.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)47-68
Number of pages22
JournalAsian Journal of Women's Studies
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1999

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Gender Studies


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