Voices of strength and resistance: A contextual and longitudinal analysis of women's responses to battering

Jacquelyn Campbell, Linda Rose, Kub Joan, Daphne Nedd

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201 Scopus citations


An ethnically and economically heterogeneous (majority well educated, African American,and (poor) urban community sample of women, self-identified as having a serious problem in an intimate relationship, were interviewed three times over 2 1/2 years. The inclusion criteria of battering was repeated physical and/or sexual assault within a context of coercive control. Feminist action research was used, combining interview and measurement instruments. Thematic analysis (coding, clustering, "subsuming particulars into the general," confirming) was used for a random subset of 31 women's in-depth interviews. The patterns of response identified were complicated and iterative, demonstrating resistance and resourcefulness. A process of achieving nonviolence was identified for most of the participants, although relationship status did not necessarily correspond to abuse status and there was continued violence after leaving the relationship. Identifiable themes included (a) active problem solving, including conscious decisions to "make do" in a relationship and/or subordinate the self; (b) responding to identifiable pivotal events, and (c) a negotiating process first with the self and then, directly and/or indirectly, with the male partner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)743-762
Number of pages20
JournalJournal of Interpersonal Violence
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1998

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Applied Psychology


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