During the past two decades, there has been a tremendous growth in research related to interpersonal violence. From this research, researchers have acquired a greater understanding of the risk factors associated with abusive and violent events, the consequences of being victimized, and the characteristics of victims and perpetrators. One area yet to be fully explored involves the interactional processes between a victim and a perpetrator. This article provides a brief description of the advantages of examining the contextual aspects of interpersonal violence, describes a promising observational analysis technique that may prove enlightening to current interpersonal violence research, and describes some limitations of the application of social interaction research to violent relationships. The article "Antecedents of Coercive Interactions in Physically Abusive Mother-Child Dyads" (from this issue) is presented as an example of the value of behavioral observational methods in interpersonal violence research.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Pathology and Forensic Medicine
- Applied Psychology
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)