Socio-Cultural Determinant Of Domestic Violence

Project and Seminar Material for Sociology

Socio-Cultural Determinant Of Domestic Violence


This research was based on domestic violence in Agege local government, Lagos state Nigeria. The people of Agege local government constitute the study population. The main objectives of this study were to examine how domestic violence influences the people living in this area. The data used for the study was collected through her interview schedule in which 200 respondent were selected through systematic random sampling.

From the study, it was observed that the majority respondent agreed that woman need to engage in labour to support their family financially. This finding showed that working mothers are conscious of their supportive role to their families but engaged actively in paid employment. Interestingly the study reported that the women receive encouragement, support and respect from their spouse which prevent occurrence of violence act from the husband. These findings corroborating, Oguwole (2005) findings that the women are respected at home for their contribution and participation actively in family decision making. Also, UN (2002) reports concur that working mothers participate more in family decision making are .less likely to witness domestic violence.

Furthermore, the study found that the working women not only receive their spouse attention and support, they also enjoy organization support, for instance 81 % of the respondent acknowledge that tree months maternity leave are always being granted to and observed by nursing mothers. They also identify it her nursing such as closing on time counseling of safe motherhood and access to organization clinic for medical attention, all this improve the relationship within the family. “On a daily basis, Nigerian women are beaten, raped and even murdered by members of their family for supposed transgressions, which can range from not having meals ready on time to visiting family members without their husband’s permission,” adding that “husbands, partners and fathers are responsible for most of the violence’s.

Chapter One


1.1 Background To The Study

Domestic violence is a patter of behavior which involve the abuse of one partner against another, this can occur in intimate relationship, marriage friendship and family affairs, it can take forms of effect on one another, physical violence involves physical afflicting pains and actions. e.g. hitting, slapping, beating, sexual harassment while psychological can be in form of denial of right, abusing, frustration (Journal of the American Medical Association, 1995).

Domestic violence” varies, depending on the context in which it is used. It ma} be defined differently in medical, legal, political or social contexts. The definitions have varied over time, and vary in different parts of the world. Traditionally, domestic violence was mostly associated with physical violence. For instance, according to the (Merriam-Webster dictionary definition, 2005) domestic violence is “the inflicting of physical injury by one family or household member on another; also: a repeated habitual pattern ‘of such behavior.

However, domestic violence today as defined by international conventions arid by governments, has a much broader definition, including economic’ abuse. Domestic violence” means any’ act of violence, even if upon another household member and includes harm to the other. (Journal of the American Medical Association, 1992).

It is also a pattern of behavior characterized by the misuse of power and control by one person over another who are or have been in an intimate relationship. It can occur in mixed gender relationships and same gender relationships and has profound consequences for the lives of children, individuals, families and communities. It may be physical sexual, emotional and/or psychological. The latter may include intimidation, harassment, and damage to property, threats and financial abuse. (The Act XX on Domestic Violence 2006, in Malta)

Furthermore is also a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner”. The definition adds that domestic violence “can happen to anyone regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, or gender”, and can take many ‘forms, including physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional, economic, and psychological abuse. (The US Office on Violence against Women)

Domestic violence can be trance back to 1800s, at this period most legal systems accepted wife beating as a valid exercise of a husband’s authority over his wife. One exception, however, was the 1641 Body of Liberties of the Massachusetts Bay colonists, which declared that a married woman should be “free from correction or stripes by her husband.

Political agitation during the nineteenth century led to changes in both popular opinion and legislation regarding domestic violence within the United Kingdom and the United States. In 1850, Tennessee became the first state in the United States to explicitly outlaw wife beating. Other states soon followed suit. In 1878, the Matrimonial Causes Act made it possible for women in the UK to seek separations from abusive husbands. By the end of the 1870s, most courts in the United States were uniformly opposed to the right of husbands to physically discipline their wives. By the early twentieth century, it was common for police to intervene in cases of domestic violence in the United States, but arrests remained rare.

The interest of this study is to examine the consequence of domestic violence is Lagos and using Agege local government as a case study, domestic violence as occurred mostly in areas of gender inequality and child abuse in this area of the state, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal, has promised that the house will toughen the law against domestic violence and gender discrimination in Nigeria. The Speaker believes that the law would help bridge all gender gaps encouraging discrimination and promote gender equality as recognized by the Constitution. He announced this move at the third national women in parliament summit in Abuja. Female lawmakers at the summit frowned at the low representation of women in the National Assembly which placed Nigeria at the 117th position among democratic nations with less than 6.8percent of women in the nation’s Parliament. (Channels Television July 01, 2013).

1.2 Statement Of Problem

It is obvious that large family size is no more desirable of the increasing rate of poverty, illiteracy and poor heath due to the effect of domestic violence in gender inequality and socio cultural belief system is one of the major consequences ,which implies that social cultural belief are the major constraints for. Domestic violence among gender in Nigeria.

In addition to this between half and two thirds of Nigerian women are subject to domestic violence in their homes. Domestic violence affects all social groups and can consist of physical, sexual and psychological abuse. Although men can also be affected by domestic violence, women suffer disproportionately (Leonie Taylor Article 14 March 2012 – 11:4Sam)

This trend occurs across much of the world, but Nigeria’s discriminatory laws and dismissive police compound its particularly high rate of domestic ·violence. Most potently, its prevalent culture of silence and stigma for the victims of domestic violence hinders’ public acknowledgement of the problem. There is an urgent need to challenge the social prejudices and institutional structures in order to protect it women, not just from danger, but also from ridicule fear and isolation.

“On a daily basis, Nigerian women are beaten, raped and even murdered by members of their family for supposed transgressions, which I Call range from not having meals ready on time to visiting family members without their husband’s permission,” adding that “husbands, partners I and fathers are responsible for most of the violence”. (Stephane Mikala, Deputy Director of Amnesty International’s Africa program)

Although more widespread in acid attacks I on women which cause extreme pain, disfigurement and can be fatal, have also been on the rise in Nigeria, and. have failed to be taken seriously as an offence by the Nigerian authorities. This is most of the problem of domestic violence that “will be treated. (Channels Television July 01, 2013)

1.3 Research Question

The following questions are put forward to guide this research work.

  1. Do socio-cultural factors influence the career of women?
  2. Do domestic violence influence and determine women participation in decision making?
  3. Is it possible for a woman to achieve her career in this situation of domestic violence?
  4. What is the psychological effect of domestic violence on the family?
  5. Psychological effect of domestic violence, how does it affect the society?

1.4 Objective Of The Study

The essential aim of this study is to examine the socio- cultural consequences of domestic violence. More specifically, the study seeks to

  1. Identify the socio-cultural factors influencing domestic violence in the study area
  2. Examine the role of woman in decision making towards achieving is career. within Nigeria cultural perspective
  3. Suggest the way forward and to make recommendations on the challenges cause by domestic violence
  4. Examine the social, psychological and health implication of combining caret assignment with domestic violence among woman, family and society.
  5. Examine the importance of socio cultural idea in the study area.

1.5 Significance Of The Study

The most compelling significance is the extensive evidence and convincing argument that domestic violence has consequences socio-culturally. Therefore, this study is justified .on the bases of fact that it will provide relevant information about effect of domestic violence socio­-culturally in Lagos state, Agege local government. Various ways in which domestic violence affect individuals especially women and how they cope with its prevalence will also receive attention from this study.

However is study will be useful for people who suffers domestic violence, government and non- governmental organization as well as Nigeria and is lawmakers will find it useful most especially in area of policy making and formation about gender in other to make a program me implementation.

Finally, t study is very important and significance be over emphasizes because there will be provision for relevant information on domestic violence, career women and family size preference l Which means that woman, parents’ media, legal practitioners, policy planners and I individual will find this project useful in their respective fields and will be also useful for other researchers.

1.6 Scope And Limitation Of The Study

This research will be limit to Agege Local government, Lagos due to time and financial constraints. Various areas of the environment will be put into consideration; therefore the prevailing area will be examine clearly and put into consideration during data analysis and interpretation.

1.7 Definition Of Terms

Domestic Violence as different forms of affecting on individual, varying from one society to another and, some of this form will be stated below for a better understanding.


Inflicting or attempting to inflict physical injury example: grabbing, pinching, and shoving, slapping, hitting, biting, arm-twisting, kicking, punching, hitting with blunt objects, stabbing, shooting withholding access to resources necessary to maintain health example: medication, medical i e, wheelchair, food or fluids, sleep, hygienic assistance Forcing alcohol or other drug use.


Coercing or attempting to coerce any sexual contact without consent example: marital rape, acquaintance rape, forced sex after physical beating, attacks on the sexual parts of the body, forced prostitution, fondling, sodomy, sex with others. Attempting to undermine the victim’ sexuality example: treating him/her in a sexually derogatory manner, criticizing sexual performance ‘e and desirability, accusations of infidelity, withholding sex.


Instilling or attempting to instill fear example: intimidation, threatening physical harm to If, victim, and/or others, threatening to harm and/or kidnap children, menacing, blackmail, harassment, destruction of pets and property, mind games, stalking. Isolating or to isolate victim from friends, family, school, and/or work example: withholding hone and/or transportation, undermining victim’s personal relationships, harassing others, constant “checkup,” constant accompaniment, use of unfounded accusations, forced imprisonment.


Undermining or attempting to undermine victim sense of worth example: constant criticism, belittling victim’s abilities and competency, name-calling, insults, put-downs, silent treatment, I manipulating victim’s feelings and emotions to induce guilt, subverting a partner’s relationship with the children, repeatedly making and breaking promises.


Making or attempting to make the victim financially dependent example: maintaining total control over financial resources including victim’s earned income or resources received t’ rough public assistance or social security, withholding money and/or access to money, forbidding attendance at school, forbidding employment, on-the –job harassment, requiring accountability and justification for all money spent, forced welfare fraud, withholding information about family running up bills for which the victim is responsible for payment.

Socio-Cultural Determinant Of Domestic Violence

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