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Perhaps one-fifth of all marriages are tainted by violence, and an equal number of children are harmed by parents. Abuse of elderly relatives is just beginning to be recognized as a major social problem, but the most common form of family violence occurs between siblings. Violence Within the Family connects the study of child, partner, sibling, and elderly abuse to the varied disciplinary perspectives of social psychology, drawing on research on aggression, attitude formation and change, self-perception, social cognition, gender roles, and group dynamics. The book covers the biological and social causes of aggression, the consequences of violence towards an intimate family member, and prevention and treatment strategies. Sharon Herzberger also addresses important policy issues and explores todays hard questions: Does a child who is abused grow up to become an abuser? Can anyone, given the right circumstances, inflict violence on a family member? Why do victims of partner abuse remain with the perpetrator? Should we arrest perpetrators of family violence, and under what conditions does arrest do more harm than good? Why cant we prosecute family violence more effectively?Answering widespread interest in this compelling topic, Herzbergers book will appeal to laypeople and professionals in criminal justice, family systems, public policy, psychology, and sociology.
It will also serve as a valuable text for advanced courses or as a supplementary text for introductory courses.
Sharon D. Herzberger is professor of psychology at Trinity College.