A Qualitative Study of Women's Lived Experiences of Conflict and Domestic Violence in Afghanistan

Violence Against Women. 2021 Sep;27(11):1862-1878. doi: 10.1177/1077801220935191. Epub 2020 Jul 6.


This article empirically explores women's lived experiences of domestic violence and conflict in Afghanistan. A thematic analysis of 20 semistructured interviews with women living in safe houses produced three main themes about the relationship between conflict and domestic violence: (a) violence from loss of patriarchal support, (b) violence from the drug trade as an economic driver, and (c) violence from conflict-related poverty. We discuss the bidirectional nature of this relationship: Not only does conflict contribute to domestic violence, but domestic violence contributes to conflict through justifying armed intervention, separating women from economic and public life, and perpetuating patriarchy.

Keywords: Afghanistan; armed conflict; domestic violence; lived experience; patriarchy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Afghanistan
  • Domestic Violence*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Poverty
  • Qualitative Research