Moving Research Beyond The Spanking Debate (In Special Issue: Moving Beyond the Spanking Debate: A Call to Action).
MacMillan, Harriet L. Mikton, Christopher R.
Published: September 2017
Child Abuse and Neglect
Vol. 71 , p. 5-8
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Despite numerous studies identifying a broad range of harms associated with the use of spanking and other types of physical punishment, debate continues about its use as a form of discipline. In this commentary, we recommend four strategies to move the field forward and beyond the spanking debate including: 1) use of methodological approaches that allow for stronger causal inference; 2) consideration of human rights issues; 3) a focus on understanding the causes of spanking and reasons for its decline in certain countries; and 4) more emphasis on evidence-based approaches to changing social norms to reject spanking as a form of discipline. Physical punishment needs to be recognized as an important public health problem. (Author abstract)
corporal punishment; child rearing; societal attitudes; family violence; parent child relationships; discipline; child abuse; physical abuse; research needs; human rights; etiology; evidence based practice