Dating Violence in Young Men and Women in Chile: Evidence from a Survey of College Students

Jocelyn Lehrer, University of California, San Francisco
Evelyn Lehrer, University of Illinois at Chicago
Zhenxiang Zhao, University of Illinois at Chicago

The social and economic climate in Chile provides fertile ground for intimate partner violence to flourish, as pronounced economic inequalities exist between men and women, and power relations between them are shaped by machismo as cultural norm. Yet to date, research and prevention/ response programs have focused almost exclusively on cohabiting and married couples. The present study represents a first effort to measure the prevalence of psychological and physical dating violence with a sample of college students in Chile. We find a high prevalence of both types of violence, with patterns that closely resemble those that have been documented for the United States. Our findings present a compelling case for not continuing to neglect dating violence in Chile and other Latin-American countries: prevention programs beginning in high school could go far in minimizing the opportunity for aggression to become an established style of conflict resolution.

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Presented in Poster Session 4