Intimate Partner Violence: A Case Study of Samoan Male Perceptions of IPV in New Zealand
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Intimate Partner Violence (IPV) is an increasing concern in New Zealand for Samoan families. Data has shown that Pasefika people are overrepresented in both statistics for violent crimes and family violence (Ministry of Social Development, 2012; Ministry of Justice, 2014). Much of the research on IPV has been from the female perspective. However, there is little or no data that has explored the male views on IPV. This study explored Samoan males understanding of IPV, factors influencing IPV and how IPV has influenced the quality of family life and relationships. For this exploratory study up to 11 talanoa discussions were held with young NZ born Samoan males between the ages of 16-35 to gain their perspectives of IPV in Samoan communities. Through appreciative inquiry and the use of the fonofale model this research also examined the impact of traditional ideologies have on the understanding of IPV. Findings include the limited understanding of IPV where their definitions and understanding were more focused on physical abuse. Secondly, the participants’ behaviours and attitudes towards IPV were learnt from experiences in their family homes. Thirdly, although the sample believed that fa’asamoa does not condone IPV, there was a feeling that male dominance, patriarchal and hierarchal systems within the fa’asamoa normalised IPV. Lastly, the participants of this study stated very strongly that they did not agree with IPV and had made considerable strides towards changing their lives for the betterment of them and their families. This study concluded with limitations and recommendations. This study was unable to elucidate the relationship between the participants understanding of faasamoa and IPV. Therefore, it is imperative that further research is focused on exploring for the participants understanding of fa’asamoa and how their understanding and perceptions might mould their understanding of IPV. The limitation of this study is that the sample group was small-it is recommended that future research involve a larger sample external to Auckland and NZ. The data from this research will contribute to existing literature and go on to set a baseline for future studies about IPV in Samoan communities.