Nov 20, 2011

Evolutionary origins of domestic violence

From this interesting paper by Mukesh Eswaran and Nisha Malhotra:
Women who work away from home are seen to confront more spousal violence, after controlling for a host of explanatory variables. This provides some tentative evidence in favor of the evolutionary psychology view on the ultimate cause of spousal violence.
This last finding has important policy implications. It suggests that empowering women through better employment opportunities which can be very helpful in terms of improving their wellbeing on balance -- may be accompanied by more wife battering. 
From the abstract:
We provide some evidence for the evolutionary theory of domestic violence, which argues that such violence stems from the jealousy caused by paternity uncertainty in our evolutionary past. The findings have strong policy implications suggesting that it will take more than an improvement in women's employment options to address the problem of spousal violence.

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