Sex Differences in Victimization from Low Intensity Intimate Partner Aggression in South Sudan


  • Owen Ndoromo Åbo Akademi University, Finland
  • Karin Österman Åbo Akademi University, Finland
  • Kaj Björkqvist Peace and Conflict Research, Developmental Psychology, Åbo Akademi University, Finland


intimate partner aggression, low intensity aggression, victimisation, South Sudan


The aim of the study was to investigate sex differences in victimisation from low intensity forms of intimate partner aggression in South Sudan. A questionnaire was filled in by 420 respondents (302 females and 118 males) in two cities in South Sudan. The mean age was 22.5 years (SD 8.4) for women and 25.6 years (SD 7.8). Victimisation from intimate partner aggression was measured with the Victim Version of the Direct Indirect Aggression Scales (DIAS-Adult; Österman & Björkqvist, 2009) which includes six scales measuring verbal and nonverbal aggression, direct and indirect aggressive social manipulation, cyber aggression, and economic aggression. The results showed that males had been significantly more victimised from physical and verbal aggression than females. A tendency was also found for males to be more victimised from nonverbal aggression and direct aggressive social manipulation. No sex differences were found regarding victimisation from indirect aggressive social manipulation, cyber aggression, or economic aggression. Males had significantly more often been bit, hit, had their belongings damaged, scratched, spit at, and shoved by their female partner. Males had also been significantly more often subjected to quarrels, to being told nasty or hurtful words, and to being yelled at by their female partner. No sex difference was found for being interrupted when talking, been called bad names, or having been angrily nagged at by their partner. For females, age correlated positively with victimisation, while for males, the correlations were mostly negative. As far as more severe forms of violence are concerned, males have generally been found to be more aggressive against their partner than vice versa; the impact of male aggression has also usually been found to be more severe.  The fact that males in domestic settings are also victimised by their spouses, although to less severe forms of aggression, has received much less attention.