Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Criminal Justice



First Advisor or Mentor

William Heffernan

Second Reader

Jeff Mellow


Domestic violence has continued to be a major global issue effecting many if not all countries in the world. The form domestic violence can take varies from country to country. Laws protecting women from domestic violence also differs as a result This research examines how cultural differences impact domestic violence legislations in the United States and the Republic of India. India was chosen as a comparison jurisdiction because of differing demographics and possible variables in that country.

The primary data source for this study were the numerous enacted legislations pertaining to domestic violence that form the legislative landscape on domestic violence in the United States and India. The units of analysis were individual code section paragraphs and a hybrid content analysis method was used to analyze the code section paragraphs and identify similarities and differences. This study found that there are significant differences in domestic violence legislations in the United States and India. The practice of dowry still remains a primary factor for the prevalence of domestic violence in India. Family structure is possibly another variable that leads to differences in the focus of the enacted legislation.



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