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Sociological Perspective on “Punishment” as a Major Contributor to Child Abuse Essay

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Updated: Dec 17th, 2021

Introduction

Punishment is seen as a way through which parents, teachers and the society use in their efforts to instill discipline in their children. There is a general acceptance that there is a level of punishment that can be legitimized what sociologists have referred to as normal punishment. However, there is no set way of measuring the level that is appropriate. This paper examines from a sociological perspective how the ideology that normal punishment is legitimate has contributed to child abuse (Sherman 77).

Reinforcement of Normal Punishment

Discipline Though Inflicting Pain

Parents, day care centers, house girls, teachers and the society have for long been punishing children by inflicting pain, especially when the child has done what is believed to be wrong. This is done with the aim of ensuring that the child is disciplined and is perceived as a legitimate punishment. In the process of punishing, the parents end up abusing the child. In most cases physical punishment is seen as a way of parenting. A child should be disciplined and it’s the responsibility of the parent to set the required standards. However, this punishment, it is often excessive and thus an abuse. What is not excessive is subject to debate.

Parents as Role Models

The parent are seen as role models to the children and thus any advise given to the children is seen as the gospel truth and children are not supposed to question it. This has offered a loophole to parents to abuse the child in the name of punishing. For example, children learn mainly through interaction with other children through playing their various social games. This is a very important exercise in a child’s life, however some parents deny their children time or restrict them, in the name of advising, from exercising this important socialization process, it may be direct where children are locked in the house or strictly forbidden from going outside. Others restrict their child on the children they are expected to play with. On the indirect perspective parents line up numerous duties to be performed by the child either homework or a never ending tuition, all this geared to deny a child free time. This has a psychological effect on the child in the short term and sometimes in the long run (Geffner and Hughes 65).

Third Parties

In incidences of rape, the culprits are mainly relatives, close family members and the neighbors, this is because our society has mandated the culprits with the perceived right to discipline the child. In the process of punishing the child end’s up abused.

In our schools from kindergartens, primary schools, and secondary schools punishment by the teacher is seen as a normal legitimate process. This has in many societies ended up misunderstood and since no level is set on the punishment acceptable, it is in most cases abused. On the other hand, since the child is made to understand that punishing him or her is good, they keep quiet and the vise continues (Loseke 121).

Conclusion

It is everyone’s mandate to ensure that a child is disciplined for a better society tomorrow. However, we have an extra role to play, that is, to ensure that no one violates this responsibility and as the saying goes- “to protect a child is to protect the world”. This emphasizes the need to protect the child for continuity. Governments should also put in place measures to ensure children’s rights are protected.

Works Cited

Geffner R. Rosenbaum & Hughes Hubbard. Research issues concerning family violence. In V. B. Van Hasselt, R. Morison, A. S. Bellack, & M. Hersen (Eds.), Handbook of family violence. New York: Plenum, 1988

Loseke R. Donileen. The battered woman and shelters: The social construction of wife abuse. New York: State University of New York Press, 1992.

Sherman W. Lawrence. Policing domestic violence: Experiments and dilemmas. New York: Free Press, 1992

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IvyPanda. "Sociological Perspective on “Punishment” as a Major Contributor to Child Abuse." December 17, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/sociological-perspective-on-punishment-as-a-major-contributor-to-child-abuse/.

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IvyPanda. 2021. "Sociological Perspective on “Punishment” as a Major Contributor to Child Abuse." December 17, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/sociological-perspective-on-punishment-as-a-major-contributor-to-child-abuse/.

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IvyPanda. (2021) 'Sociological Perspective on “Punishment” as a Major Contributor to Child Abuse'. 17 December.

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