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The tie that binds? Husband’s and wives’ perspectives on sexual and reproductive agency in Bangalore, India

Jeffrey Edmeades, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)
Tina Y. Falle, International Center for Research on Women (ICRW)
Rohini P. Pande, Independent Consultant
Suneeta Krishnan, University of California, San Francisco

Recent research has emphasized the role that women’s sexual agency plays in their reproductive and sexual health, with greater agency being associated with improved health outcomes. While research on sexual agency is more limited than is the case for other forms of agency, it is widely assumed that women’s agency is strongly influenced by their husbands, often with detrimental effects on their health. However, research in this area is limited, with relatively little empirical evidence of the direct effect that couple relations and perceptions play in shaping women’s perceptions of their own agency. In this paper we use data from 187 husband-wife dyads to explore the effect of husband’s attitudes regarding their wife’s agency on women’s self-reported sexual agency in Bangalore, India.

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Presented in Poster Session 2: Poster Session 2: fertility, family and children