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NCJ Number: 50691 Find in a Library
Title: FORCE AND VIOLENCE IN THE FAMILY
Journal: JOURNAL OF MARRIAGE AND THE FAMILY  Volume:33  Issue:4  Dated:SPECIAL ISSUE (NOVEMBER 1971)  Pages:624-636
Author(s): W J GOODE
Corporate Author: National Council on Family Relations
United States of America
Date Published: 1971
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: National Council on Family Relations
Minneapolis, MN 55414
National Institute of Mental Health
Rockville, MD 20857
National Science Foundation
Arlington, VA 22230
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE ROLE OF FORCE IN MAINTAINING FAMILY STRUCTURE AND IN SOCIALIZATION AND ITS POTENTIAL TO TRANSFORM INTO VIOLENCE IS EXAMINED, WITH CROSS-CULTURAL ILLUSTRATIONS OF CHILDREARING PRACTICES IN JAPAN.
Abstract: LIKE ALL OTHER SOCIAL UNITS, THE FAMILY IS A POWER SYSTEM, RESTING TO SOME EXTENT ON FORCE OR ITS THREAT. FORCE OR ITS THREAT IS USED IN ALL SOCIAL SYSTEMS BECAUSE IT IS A MAJOR RESOURCE BY WHICH PEOPLE CAN PERSUADE OTHERS TO DO SOMETHING. ALTHOUGH SOCIAL ANALYSTS OFTEN ATTEMPT TO PROVE THAT FORCE IS SIMPLY AN INEFFECTIVE WAY OF CONTROLLING OTHERS, THE ARTICLE CONTENDS THAT THERE ARE BOTH LEGITIMATE AND ILLEGITIMATE APPLICATIONS OF FORCE IN THE FAMILY. WHEN USED ALONE, FORCE IS INEFFECTIVE. FORCE IS PRIMARILY THOUGHT OF AS A DETERRENT. DURING THE PROCESS OF SOCIALIZATION, THE PROCESS BY WHICH INFANTS ARE TAUGHT THE VALUES, NORMS AND ROLE HABITS OF THE FAMILY AND SOCIETY, CHILDREN ARE TAUGHT THE VALUE AND USE OF FORCE THROUGH THEIR PARENTS' USE OF IT IN SOCIALIZING THEM. HUMAN BEINGS LEARN QUICKLY FROM PUNISHMENT; THIS LEARNING IS NOT MERELY COGNITIVE BUT IS ALSO EMOTIONAL. THIS EFFECT IS MOST STRIKING IN THE AREA OF SEX, WHERE EARLY PUNISHMENTS COLOR LATER EXPRESSIONS OF LOVE, SEXUALITY, AND TRUST. AN EXAMINATION OF CHILDREARING IN JAPAN, WHERE PHYSICAL FORCE IS NOT USED, POINTS OUT THE GREAT DIFFICULTIES IN MEASURING FORCE THAT RARELY EXPRESSES ITSELF IN OVERT PHYSICAL SHOVING OR HITTING. IN MEASURING FORCE, TWO SETS OF RELATIONSHIPS MUST BE CONSIDERED: THOSE BETWEEN THE COMMAND OF POWER OR FORCE AND OTHER SOCIAL RESOURCES AND THOSE BETWEEN PHYSICAL PUNISHMENT IN CHILDREARING AND VARIOUS OTHER FAMILY VARIABLES. NUMEROUS HYPOTHESES OF STUDIES DESIGNED TO ASCERTAIN THE EFFECTS OF FORCE DESCRIBE RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN PHYSICAL, PUNITIVE, AND HARSH SOCIALIZATION PRACTICES AND OTHER FAMILY VARIABLES, INCLUDING THE EFFECTIVENESS OF SOCIALIZATION. SOME OF THESE HYPOTHESES ARE NOTED. SOCIAL LINKAGES BETWEEN EVALUATIONS, SOCIAL PRESSURES, AND THE PROPENSITY TO ASSAULT ACCOUNT FOR SOME OF THE MAJOR DIFFERENCES IN ASSAULT AND HOMICIDE RATES THAT HAVE BEEN REPORTED IN RESEARCH ON VIOLENCE. IN ANY CONTINUING FAMILY STRUCTURE, PEOPLE ARE TIED THROUGH A FLOW OF SOCIAL TRANSACTIONS. CONFLICTS ARISE WHEN ONE PERSON FEELS HE IS PAYING MORE THAN HE RECEIVES. A COMPARISON OF HOMICIDE AND ASSAULT RATES IN DIFFERENT GROUPS REVEALS THAT DISADVANTAGED MEMBERS OF THE LOWER SOCIAL STRATA RESORT TO VIOLENCE TO CORRECT SOCIAL IMBALANCES MORE FREQUENTLY THAN OTHER GROUPS. BECAUSE THEIR RESOURCES ARE LIMITED, AND THEY SUFFER GREATER FRUSTRATIONS, THE BEHAVIOR OF PARENTS WHO ABUSE THEIR CHILDREN IS EXPLAINED BETTER IN TERMS OF PRIOR SOCIALIZATION, IN WHICH THEY WERE DEPRIVED OF LOVE AND TENDERNESS AS CHILDREN, THAN IN TERMS OF SOCIAL PRESSURES ASSOCIATED WITH DAILY LIVING. REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED. (DEP)
Index Term(s): Child abuse; Domestic relations; Family offenses; Murder; Sociology; Violence
Note: PRESENTED AS THE FIFTH ANNUAL ERNEST W BURGESS AWARD LECTURE OF THE NATIONAL COUNCIL ON FAMILY RELATIONS, CHICAGO, OCTOBER 9, 1970
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50691

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