Do Battered Wives in India Conceive and Bear Children Who Are Less Likely to Survive?

Nan Johnson, Michigan State University

Violence inflicted against women can have many negative consequences. If the wife is pregnant when she is assaulted, the child may suffer such adverse outcomes as intrauterine mortality, premature delivery, low birth weight, or infant mortality. Most studies of infant and child mortality have ignored the influence of prenatal assaults on their mothers. To shore up this gap in the literature, we shall analyze the association between the physical assault of married women of reproductive age (MWRA) in India and the adverse health conditions in their children. Two measures of adverse health in offspring (dependent variable) shall be perinatal mortality (stillbirth and spontaneous abortion) and the death of any child under age 5 years. The dependent variable of physical violence will indicate experience and non-experience of violence. Multinomial logit regressions shall be used to investigate these relationships as reflected in the 1998-99 National Family Health Survey of India.

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Presented in Poster Session 3: Children and Youth, Adolescence, Parenting, Transition to Adulthood, Life Course