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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 155559 Find in a Library
Title: Validity of a Scale Measuring Beliefs Regarding the "Positive" Effects of Punishing Children: A Study of Mexican Mothers
Journal: Child Abuse and Neglect  Volume:19  Issue:6  Dated:(June 1995)  Pages:669- 679
Author(s): V Corral-Verdugo; M Frias-Armenta; M Romero; A Munoz
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 11
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: One hundred and five mothers of different socioeconomic levels in Hermosillo, Mexico, were interviewed to determine the influence that beliefs concerning the corrective effects of punishment have on child punishment and child abuse in this Mexican population.
Abstract: Fifty-nine participants had been reported as abusive mothers; the rest were selected from the general population. The study used an instrument containing six items relating to beliefs and a list of punishments. Moderate punishment was defined as slapping, spanking, insulting, swearing, stamping out of the room or house, pushing, grabbing, or shoving, whereas severe punishment consisted of burning, scalding, kicking, biting, or hitting with a fist or object. The responses to the questionnaire were contrasted with the reports the mothers gave regarding the physical punishment they inflicted on their children. Factor analysis indicated a significant and high correlation between the beliefs factor and a corrective punishment factor. Parents using corrective punishment were more likely than others to abuse their children physically. Findings indicated that the direct, significant effect of the parent's beliefs on the punishment of children explains much about the child abuse problem in the society studied. In addition, moderate punishment should not be considered innocuous in view of findings of Straus and Fry that the use of corporal punishment as a disciplinary strategy tends to increase aggressiveness in children and the probability of juvenile delinquency in adolescence and violent crime as an adult. Figures, tables, and 23 references (Author abstract modified)
Main Term(s): Juvenile delinquency prevention
Index Term(s): Child abuse as delinquency factor; Child abuse causes; Crime in foreign countries; Juvenile victims; Mexico; Parental attitudes; Punishment
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