How the Role of Children Has Evolved Through History
The roles of children have been evolving over the last centuries. Throughout the middle ages, children were mainly expected to engage in hunting and gathering. Girls were expected to complete different household chores. Boys were trained to become future warriors. Throughout the 1900s, children were expected to attend different schools. They were also required to complete certain household duties. History also shows clearly that the roles of children have not been uniform in different societies (Lussier, LeBlanc, & Proulx, 2005). Girls were supposed to become housewives at a tender age. Boys were expected to look after cattle. They were also encouraged to protect their siblings.
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Older children “were expected to take care of their younger siblings” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 18). Some of these roles are also practiced in different communities today (Pervan & Hunter, 2012). Some boys were required to become kings after the death of their fathers. This practice was common in every monarchy. Children have always been expected to engage in various sporting activities. Many children in every part of the globe are expected to attend school. This development explains why modern children have fewer roles in the house. The modern world is also encouraging more children to focus on their careers at a tender age.
Functionalism and Child Abuse
Functionalism is one of the concepts used to examine the nature of child abuse. Functionalism focuses on the responsibilities of different persons within a specific society. Some individuals or parents might abuse their children in order to feel superior (Pervan & Hunter, 2012). The concept of functionalism justifies the existence of the status quo. This situation explains why child abuse has become a major problem in many societies. For instance, some societies justify certain malpractices such as Female Genital Mutilation (FGM).
Rape is a major problem affecting many societies across the globe. Nicholas Groth was a psychologist who worked with incarcerated sex offenders. Groth described “three major types of rape” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 12). Anger rape occurs when the intention of the offender is to debase, hurt, or humiliate the targeted victim. The second type is called power rape. This “kind of rape occurs due to feelings of inadequacy” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 14). The rapist might intimidate targeted victims using weapons and threats. Sadistic rape occurs when the offender uses the power to inflict pain. Sadistic rape is usually hard to withstand (Gaudin, 2014). Gang rape is “a common crime committed by criminals and young men” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 18).
Child sexual abusers are usually grouped into two categories. Fixated offenders include “those individuals whose sexual preferences revolve around children” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 19). Such individuals cannot have healthy sexual relationships with their age-mates. Such “persons tend to be emotionally immature” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 46). On the other hand, regressed offenders are “normal persons who can have appropriate sexual partners” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 47). The “sexual behaviors of such persons may be impulsive, opportunistic, or situational” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 49). Such persons “will rape girls who are well known to them” (Gaudin, 2014, p. 53). These two groups are relevant to understanding the issues associated with rape.
Finkelhor’s Preconditions Model
Different theories have been proposed to explain how rape takes place. One of these theories is Finkelhor’s Preconditions Model. This model outlines four favorable conditions that facilitate the occurrence of a sexual offense. These four conditions occur systematically before rape takes place. The four preconditions include “the thinking stage, overcoming internal inhibitions, overcoming external inhibitions, and overcoming the victim’s resistance” (Pervan & Hunter, 2012, p. 5). Practitioners can use this model to examine the issues associated with the targeted offense. Social workers can “use the theory to discuss complex sexual matters with different offenders” (Pervan & Hunter, 2012, p. 5).
The important thing is to consider the causal factors leading to the targeted crime. Social workers should also maintain the highest level of professionalism. Health professionals can use the model to discuss various emotional issues affecting every targeted offender (Crosson-Tower, 2012). This practice will ensure every offender gets the best support.
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Polansky and Colleagues
Polansky and colleagues have identified certain characteristics associated with abusive mothers. These scholars have outlined several psychological characteristics exhibited by abusive women. The researchers “observed that abusive mothers tend to be psychotic” (Pervan & Hunter, 2012, p. 7). Impulse-ridden mothers will also neglect their children. Women suffering from reactive depression (RD) will also abuse their children (Lussier & Beauregard, 2014). Such women are believed to have encountered numerous emotional problems during their childhood. Neglectful mothers tend to abuse their children. Such individuals are also dysfunctional, angry, and less socialized.
Such women will also promote unhappiness in their families (Crosson-Tower, 2012). These scholars have examined the psychological issues affecting different female offenders. The theory proposed by these scholars is relevant towards addressing the needs of different victims. Social workers should, therefore, use this theory to support different offenders.
Crosson-Tower, C. (2012). Exploring Child Welfare: A Practice Perspective. New York, NY: Pearson. Web.
Gaudin, J. (2014). Child Neglect: A Guide for Intervention. New York, NY: DIANE Publishing. Web.
Lussier, P., & Beauregard, E. (2014). Sex Offending: A Criminological Perspective. Journal of Criminal Justice, 42(1), 105-110. Web.
Lussier, P., LeBlanc, M., & Proulx, J. (2005). The generality of criminal behavior: A confirmatory factor analysis of the criminal activity of sex offenders in adulthood. Journal of Criminal Justice, 33(1), 177-189. Web.
Pervan, S., & Hunter, M. (2012). Cognitive Distortions and Social Self-Esteem in Sexual Offenders. Web.