Attitudes of young people towards female perpetrated gender-based violence against men in Zambia
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Original versionOsloMet - Oslo Metropolitan University
This study explored the attitudes of Zambian youths toward female perpetrated Gender Based Violence (GBV) against men. Given the paucity of studies on female perpetrated GBV against men, this study aimed to fill that gap by exploring attitudes of people towards female perpetrated GBV against men, including causes, effects, as well as reporting patterns. Using a mixed methods design, a total of 283 participants were included in the study. Most of these participants were students from the University of Zambia (UNZA) main campus. Other participants came from UNZA Ridgeway campus, Ng’ombe community, the Zambia Police Service Victim Support Unit and the Ng’ombe Health Centre – Gender Based Violence One-Stop Centre (NHC-GBVOSC). Self-administered structured questionnaires and semi-structured interview and focus group discussion guide were used to collect data. Theories of Feminism, Intersectionality and Blaming the Victim were used to help derive deeper understanding and explanation to the attitudes uncovered in the study. The study shows that female perpetrated GBV against men in Zambia is a phenomenon receiving increasing attention in the country and is caused by various factors. The study also shows that society’s attitudes generally seem to be changing, moving towards more acknowledgement of the problem; that female perpetrated GBV against men does exist. However, society also seems to have high tolerance for female perpetrated GBV against men as the male victims are usually labelled as weak or as having done something to deserve the abuse at the hands of a female. Cultural norms about marriage coupled by stereotypes that men are supposed to be stronger than women seem to be ranked high among the reasons why people are reluctant to believe a man that has been abused. This causes the men not to want to report that they have been abused to the police or to family and friends. The study calls for increased sensitization to highlight the fact that GBV against men does exist and is just as destructive to men and society as a whole as GBV against women is. There is also need to harmonize culture and education of women’s/human rights to counteract the perception that women’s empowerment is contributing to female perpetrated GBV against men in Zambia.
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