Gender norms, violence in childhood, and men’s coercive control in marriage: A multilevel analysis of young men in Bangladesh.

Objective: Coercive control in marriage is common in patriarchal settings, but multilevel determinants are understudied. Method: Using a probability sample of 570 junior men (married, 18–34 years) from the Bangladesh survey of the 2011 UN Multi-Country Study of Men and Violence, we examined how exposure to violence in childhood and community-level gender norms were related to men’s attitudes about gender equity and use of controlling behavior. We tested whether community-level gender norms moderated the relationship between men’s exposure to violence in childhood and our outcomes. Results: According to results from multilevel Poisson regression models, as community gender norms become more equitable by one SD, a junior married man’s expected rate of controlling behavior is lower by 0.11, and his rate of agreement with gender equitable attitudes is higher by 0.27. More gender-equitable community norms were negatively related to a junior married man’s use of controlling behavior. Childhood exposure to violence was not associated with use of controlling behavior. There was a significant cross-level interaction such that exposure to violence had a stronger negative impact on men’s gender equitable attitudes in communities with lower overall gender equity than those with higher overall gender equity. The corresponding cross-level interaction effect was not significant for the controlling behavior outcome. Conclusions: More equitable community gender norms may encourage more gender-equitable attitudes and discourage use of controlling behavior among junior men, suggesting that interventions to change community gender norms may reduce coercive control of women in marriage. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved)