ERIC Number: ED354443
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1993-Feb-15
Corporal Punishment of Adolescents by American Parents.
Straus, Murray A.; Donnelly, Denise A.
Corporal punishment is usually thought of as a method of "discipline" used with young children. However, it may continue into adolescence. This study examined the extent to which corporal punishment was used with a large and nationally representative sample of adolescents. Corporal punishment was defined as the use of physical force with the intention of causing a child to experience pain but not injury, for the purposes of correction or control of the child's behavior. Data were from interviews with the nationally representative sample of 6,002 American couples who participated in the National Family Violence Resurvey (Straus and Gelles, 1986; 1990). The interviews were conducted by telephone in the summer of 1985. Respondents with one or more minor children living at home were asked about their use of corporal punishment on one of those children. A later part of the same interview asked whether the respondents themselves had been physically punished when they were adolescents. Results indicated that half or more of adolescents were hit by their parents, and that when this happens it tends to happen frequently: a median of four times during a 12-month period, and a mean of six to eight times. Results also indicated that having two parents increases the probability of an adolescent being hit. The prevalence and chronicity of parents hitting adolescent children is consistent with attitude data which shows considerable support for parents hitting adolescents. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Inst. of Mental Health (DHHS), Bethesda, MD.; New Hampshire Univ., Durham.
Authoring Institution: New Hampshire Univ., Durham. Family Research Lab.