This is from "Interspousal Violence," a paper by Brinkerhoff and Lupri. (Two professors at the University of Calgary), printed in the Canadian Journal of Sociology 13(4) 1988.
Unlike other reports that focus exclusively on violence against women, this study included 562 married and cohabiting couples in Calgary. Both members of the couple were interviewed separately. While one member was being interviewed, the other filled in a questionnaire. Both were asked to report acts that they had committed. The authors noted that their figures might represent substantial understatements of the truth because some people thought violence so normal that they did not bother to report minor incidents; because others were too ashamed to report their own perpetration or victimization; and because divorced couples, among whom severe violence may well have been a reason for marital breakdown, were not included in the survey.
The table below summarizes the findings of this study:
During this past year of marriage
or living together, I...
husband % to-wife %
1. Threatened to hit or throw something at the other
-- once 8.9 10.5
-- twice or more 10.8 6.8
2. Pushed, grabbed, or shoved the other
-- once 7.8 9.8
-- twice or more 6.2 5.2
3. Slapped the other
-- once 5.2 4.1
-- twice or more 2.6 1.8
4. Kicked, bit, or hit the other with a fist
-- once 3.7 2.1
-- twice or more 2.7 1.1
5. Hit or tried to hit the other
-- once 7.5 5.7
-- twice or more 6.5 3.1
6. Beat up the other one
-- at least once 1.8 1.7
7. Threatened the other with a knife or gun
-- at least once 1.3 0.6
8. Used a knife or gun on the other
1 case none
Professor Merlin B. Brinkerhoff or Professor Eugen Lupri,
Department of Sociology, University of Calgary,
When the authors looked into their figures more closely, some fascinating trends began to emerge. For example, the more highly educated a man is, the less likely he is to be violent toward his partner. Female violence, on the other hand, increases with education. In fact, college-educated women were nearly twice as likely to assault their partners as college-educated men (14.5 percent versus 8.8 percent).
Other findings suggest that critics of the conventional family may be misguided. Younger, unmarried, and childless couples were all much more likely than older, married couples with children to engage in acts of violence. The only exception to this occurred among couples in which the man was of pension-able age -- men aged sixty-five and above were more likely than middle-aged men to be violent toward their spouses.
To quote two other domestic violence researchers, R.L. McNeely and Gloria Robinson-Simpson, from their article in the March 1988 Social Work magazine:
Labeling domestic violence as a "women's issue" tends to vilify men simply because they are men, ignores the fact that many men are victimized, creates conditions that diminish the involvement of men in solving the problem and leads to the development of remedies that do not address the full scope of the problem.... It is just not good judgment to conceptualize the problem as the exclusive domain of a single group, one outcome of which is to create conditions that set men and women apart rather than bring us together on domestic violence as *our* problem