Partner Violence Beliefs, Attitudes, and Implications in Israeli Muslim Society

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The purpose of the current article was to examine beliefs and attitudes around partner violence within Muslim society in Israel. The study addressed three gender-asymmetrical aspects of such beliefs: reasons for violence (the belief that men hurt their female partners to control them, and the belief that women hurt their male partners to protect themselves); violent behavior (the belief that men, more than women, are violent in intimate relationships); and the outcomes of violence (the belief that women, more than men, are injured as a result of intimate violence). The study also examines the attitude toward the appropriate social response to the problem (the belief that men who use partner violence should be condemned more than women should). First, the study compares men and women's belief levels and relates these to the accumulating empirical knowledge. Then, the study examines the difference between men and women in the relationship between the beliefs, as well as the effects of this on prevailing attitudes. The study was based on a community sample of 420 Muslim students. The research findings indicate that the belief that men, more than women, use physical violence in intimate relationships was the strongest belief of those tested and it was stronger among women than among men. The findings also indicate that among both men and women, the behavioral aspect does not affect the tendency for condemnation. On the other hand, among both, the consequences of violence affect condemnation. Theoretical and empirical implications of gender differences in physically violent behavior, Gender differences in consequences of physical partner violence, gender differences in condemnation of violent behavior and effects of beliefs on the attitude toward its condemnation were discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-195
Number of pages17
JournalPartner Abuse
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Copyright 2020 Springer Publishing Company, LLC.


  • Muslim
  • attitudes
  • beliefs
  • gender
  • partner violence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Psychology
  • Health(social science)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Law


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