Intimate partner violence

Eli J Finkel, Christopher I. Eckhardt

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


Scholars have identified many dozens of risk factors for intimate partner violence (IPV) perpetration, but they have been less successful at establishing the processes through which these risk factors promote IPV perpetration and at elucidating the interplay among the corpus of established risk factors. The present chapter reviews this sprawling, unruly literature from the perspective of I3theory (pronounced "I-cubed theory"), a novel framework designed to impose theoretical coherence on IPV risk factors and to stimulate new research. I3 theory identifies three processes through which risk factors promote IPV perpetration: instigation, which encompasses discrete situational events that normatively trigger an urge to aggress; impellance, which encompasses factors that alter individuals' "urge-readiness" at the moment they encounter instigation; and inhibition, which encompasses the counteraction to the urge to aggress. IPV perpetration is most likely, and most severe, when instigating and impelling forces are strong and inhibiting forces are weak.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Close Relationships
EditorsJeffry Simpson, Lorne Campbell
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages23
ISBN (Print)9780195398694
StatePublished - 2013


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