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date: 27 October 2021

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter proposes a unifying explanation to two questions: Why do people persist in exhibiting angry, coercive escalating behaviors toward family members despite the unpleasant and destructive qualities of the behavior and despite the fact that such behaviors typically violate personal and societal norms about how to treat loved ones? How are some people able to deescalate out of angry conflict in a way that strengthens, rather than corrodes, their relationships? It posits an integrative model of the mechanisms that control dyadic anger escalation and deescalation in couples’ conflict and examines evidence from studies that have tested it. It reviews the extant literature pertinent to coercion in couples’ interactions and intimate partner violence and discusses the results of a study intended to test and extend the coercion model in couples.

Keywords: coercive process, intimate partner violence, relationship, coercive behavior, couple

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