The paper describes the combined use of qualitative and quantitative methods to provide a preliminary definition of the construct, the reasons for divorce among Israeli Arab women. The qualitative methods consisted of personal in terviews and a focus group, the quantitative method of Trochim's concept mapping. The combined approach was adopted in the wake of skepticism about the ability of research instruments developed in the West to study Western populations to provide valid and reliable assessments of non-Western groups. A culturally sensitive definition of the construct was sought as a first step in the design of a culturally sensitive research instrument for a study of divorce among Israeli Arabs to be carried out by a number of Arab and Jewish scholars in Israel.

The findings support the authors' initial intuition that the reasons that lead Israeli Arab women to divorce are different from those that motivate middle class Western women. While the latter tend to be motivated by emotional reasons,from poor communication and desire for self-fulfillment, the Muslim Arab women who divorce are moved by really extreme marital misery brought on by a high degree of physical violence, sexual torment, emotional abuse, and/or the mental illness or addiction of their partners, as well as by the active intervention of their in-laws to break up their marriage. Introduction In recent years, there has been increasing recognition of the need to anchor social and psychological research of minority or ethnic populations in the culture of the group under investigation (Hughes et al., 1993; Hui & Triandis, 1989; Sasao & Sue, 1993; Seidrnan, 1993; Sue,