Department of Conflict Resolution Studies Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


College of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences – Department of Conflict Resolution Studies

First Advisor

Ismael Muvingi

Second Advisor

Dustin Berna

Third Advisor

Robin Cooper


Conflict Resolution, Domestic Violence, Gender studies, Male Marginalization, Male Perpetration, Trinidad


The complex social issue of domestic violence is a global problem. Its multifaceted impacts are devastating to those far beyond the immediate victim and perpetrator. On the islands of Trinidad and Tobago, domestic violence incidences are frequent. While customary, reactive intervention and research initiatives in Trinidad have focused mainly on women and children, curbing this social ill has been unsuccessful. This dissertation sought to balance the domestic violence equation by exploring Trinidadian men’s perspectives on this social issue and also sought to examine their perspectives on the concept of male marginalization in relation. Using a qualitative method of inquiry, the researcher collected data from a sample of twelve Trinidadian men; seven took part in one-on-one open-ended interview sessions, and the remaining five participated in a focus group. Two central research questions guided the study: (1) What are men’s perceived reasons about why Trinidadian men perpetrate domestic violence against women in Trinidad? (2) What are men’s perspectives on male marginalization and its influence on why men perpetrate domestic violence against women in Trinidad? The study found that the participants perceived Trinidadian men’s domestic violence perpetrating habits to be a result of several factors such as: a need to be in control, feel powerful and to demand respect; men’s inability to communicate feelings and emotions; childhood socialization experiences and lack of consequences for perpetrators. Additionally, male marginalization was perceived to be a result of women’s upward mobility in education, employment and income earning capabilities. Participants perceived male marginalization as contributory to men’s perpetration of domestic violence in Trinidad.