Behind Closed Doors
Violence in the American Family
Behind Closed Doors is grounded in the unprecedented national survey of the extent, patterns, and causes of violence in the American family. Based on a study of over 2,000 families, the authors provide landmark insights into this phenomenon of violence and what causes Americans to inflict it on their family members. The authors explore the relationship between spousal abuse and child abuse as well as abuse between siblings, violence by children against their parents, and the causes and effects of verbal abuse. Taken together, their analysis provides a vivid picture of how violence is woven into the fabric of family life and why the hallmark of family life is both love and violence. This is a comprehensive, highly readable account of interest to both the professional and the layperson on an important topic, which concerns the social well-being of us all.
Editorial Reviews"Because of the pioneering work of these authors, we know that battered children become battering parents, that violent criminals were usually abused as children and that the dimensions of family violence are wider than we had ever imagined."—New York Times Book Review
"It is important to keep before us the ideal of a society in which violence has no place in families, and this book is a good reminder."—Christian Science Monitor
"It is a happily notable exception when professionals in such disciplines are masters of the art of lively writing." —Richmond Times-Dispatch
"The most complete report to date on the issue of child abuse and other expressions of family violence."—Journal of Social Welfare