The social construction of concealment among Chinese women in abusive marriages in Hong Kong

Woon Ki Angelina Yuen Tsang, Pauline Sung

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


This article presents the findings of a qualitative study of 15 Chinese women in Hong Kong who experienced marital conflict and family violence. Adopting a narrative approach, the authors found that the women had gradually developed a culture of concealment through a process of social construction. Individual, environmental, and cultural factors had combined to develop and reinforce their tendency to conceal their situation and to remain silent. This culture of concealment was highly oppressive and had a negative impact on the women's personal, interpersonal, and social well-being. Social work strategies to break this pattern of behavior and to liberate the women from the culture of concealment are explored.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)284-299
Number of pages16
JournalAffilia - Journal of Women and Social Work
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2005


  • Abusive marriage
  • Concealment
  • Disclosure
  • Face
  • Social construction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gender Studies
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)

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