Child abuse and neglect in the family: a scientific definition and public opinion about the problem

Tyumen State University Herald. Social, Economic, and Law Research


Vesntik TSU. Sociology (#8 ). 2014

Child abuse and neglect in the family: a scientific definition and public opinion about the problem

About the authors:

Maria M. Akulich,
Dr. Sociol. Sci., Professor, Department of General and Economic Sociology, Financial and Economic Institute, Tyumen State University

Olga A. Besedina, 1st Category Expert, Administration of the Yamalo-Nenets Autonomous Okrug’s Governor (Salekhard);


In this article the authors' approach to understanding the terms "child abuse" and "violence against children" is revealed. The key approaches to this problem and possible definitions of terms are specified. The scientific understanding of the term "child abuse" and its perception by common people are not identical, and it is accentuated in the article. Those examples of parents' behavior which scientists consider to be child abuse, because of their destructive influence on the development of a child's personality, are considered by parents to be ordinary forms of educational influence or a usual way of punishment for offence or bad behavior. This supposition is confirmed by the results of the authors' research, which is presented in the article. In spite of the fact that the majority of respondents consider the problem of child abuse critical, many of them have quite a loyal attitude to many forms of psychological and physical violence and do not consider them as facts of child abuse.


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