Spouse Assault: The Ethnic Dimension in an Immigration Country

Jelena Keller, University of Lausanne

Domestic violence has become a prominent issue throughout Europe over the last years. During the summer of 2002 and following the model of the International Crime Victimization Surveys, a major coordinated survey on violence against women has been conducted in several Western countries. Switzerland, which is among the participating countries, has the longest history of immigration within Europe, and an unusually high proportion of immigrants in its population (beyond 20 percent). Given the relatively large Swiss sample (of 2,000 interviewed women), this situation allows us to analyse more in detail the ethnic dimension in connection with spouse assault. So far, this subject has hardly been addressed in research and policy.

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Updated 05/20/2006