Who Gets Blamed for Intimate Partner Violence? The Relative Contributions of Perpetrator Sex Category, Victim Confrontation, and Observer Attitudes

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The present study examined the effects of perpetrator sex category, victim confrontation, observer sex category, and observer attitudes on attributions of blame and behavioral stability for partner violence. Data were collected from 728 college-aged students enrolled at 2 universities in the United States. Results demonstrated that males and females attributed less blame and behavioral stability to female perpetrators than male perpetrators, especially if the perpetrator was provoked. Moreover, attitudes toward women and violence were important for predicting attributions, and some of the evidence for observer effects was reduced to nonsignificance once these variables were added to the model. © The Author(s) 2012.

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