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Intersectional community correlates of married women’s experiences of male intimate partner physical violence in Bangladesh: a cross-sectional study
  1. Laila Rahman1,
  2. Janice Du Mont1,2,
  3. Patricia O'Campo1,3,4,
  4. Gillian Einstein1,2,5,6
  1. 1 Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  2. 2 Women's College Research Institute, Women's College Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  3. 3 Centre for Urban Health Solutions, St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  4. 4 Li Ka Shing Knowledge Institute, St. Michael’s Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  5. 5 Department of Psychology, University of Toronto, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
  6. 6 Department of Gender Studies, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden
  1. Correspondence to Laila Rahman, Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON M5T 3M7, Canada; laila.rahman{at}


Background In Bangladesh, little is known about community-level factors shaping married women’s experiences of male intimate partner physical violence (MIPPV); it is also unknown if these factors interact with each other. We examined the (1) association between four residential community characteristics defined by the attributes of ever married women in those communities–younger age, lower education, higher participation in earning an income and poverty; and (2) two-way interactions between these community-level MIPPV correlates.

Methods We used a cross-sectional sample comprising 14 557 currently married women who were living with their spouses from 911 Bangladeshi communities. Data were collected during 13–22 August 2015. Conflict Tactics Scale-2 measured the outcome–women’s current MIPPV experiences; and multilevel logistic regression models predicted this outcome.

Results Four community characteristics including higher proportions of women’s earning an income and achieving higher education were not associated with their increased likelihood of experiencing MIPPV. However, women living in higher earning participation, higher educated communities were significantly more likely to experience MIPPV than those in lower earning participation, higher educated communities (predicted probability, p=0.30, 95% CI 0.26 to 0.34 vs p=0.24, 95% CI 0.22 to 0.25).

Conclusion This is the first study to examine interactions between women’s community-level MIPPV correlates in Bangladesh. Although we did not find support for the relationship between women’s most intersectional community-level locations and MIPPV, we did find a currently invisible vulnerable intersectional location: higher earning participation, higher educated communities. Bangladeshi violence against women prevention policies and programmes, therefore, need to engage with these particular communities to tackle head on male responses to these locations to reduce MIPPV.

  • violence
  • gender
  • neighborhood/place
  • international health
  • public health

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  • Contributors LR conceived of the study, acquired and analysed the data and wrote the first draft of the manuscript. PO guided the statistical analyses; PO and JDM directed the hypothesis testing and closely reviewed the statistical tables and figures. GE supervised the study and provided intellectual input to the study including ethics approval and data acquisition. GE and JDM critically edited and revised manuscript drafts. All authors contributed to the conceptual framework, interpretation of results and finalising the manuscript.

  • Funding LR’s work is supported by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, the Frederick Banting and Charles Best Canada Graduate Scholarship. JDM’s work is supported in part by the Atkinson Foundation. GE’s work is supported by The Wilfred and Joyce Posluns Chair in Women’s Brain Health and AgingAgeing (Canadian Institutes of Health Research, The Ontario Brian Institute and The Wilfred and Joyce Posluns Fund).

  • Disclaimer The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not reflect those of the authors’ affiliated and sponsored institutes.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Ethics approval The University of Toronto gave an ethics review exemption to this secondary, deidentified, cross-sectional survey data analysis project. BBS collected the primary data by conducting the Bangladesh Violence Against Women Survey 2015. BBS reported to have received informed consent before conducting interviews and carried out the survey according to the United Nations and WHO’s violence against women ethics guidelines.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement Data may be obtained from a third party and are not publicly available.

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