The Smallest Victims: A History of Child Maltreatment and Child Protection in America, 1st Edition

  • Herbert C. Covey
  • Published By:
  • ISBN-10: 1440860726
  • ISBN-13: 9781440860720
  • DDC: 362.760973
  • 312 Pages | eBook
  • Original Copyright 2018 | Published/Released March 2019
  • This publication's content originally published in print form: 2018

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When child maltreatment occurs, it strikes chords in our hearts because we sense the terrible injustice inherent in the matter: children are innocent and not able to protect themselves. This book provides readers with an overview of how perceptions of child maltreatment have changed over the years and how the American child protection system has evolved to keep pace with them, revealing the historical origins of current child protection issues and surveying efforts to find solutions.The Smallest Victims is unique in stressing the subjective and relative nature of the social construction of child maltreatment as it includes abuse and neglect. It identifies historical social factors and links them to perceptions of child maltreatment and responses to it. How maltreatment was once perceived in pre-American and American societies, for example, has had significant implications on the reactions it elicited, from tolerance to outrage.The book devotes a chapter to the exploitation of children in the labor market and as sexual victims, timely subjects given the national interest in human trafficking. Other chapters explore state intervention in family affairs and when children are removed from their homes. The book also includes a detailed timeline that denotes critical milestones since antiquity.

Table of Contents

Front Cover.
Half Title Page.
Title Page.
Copyright Page.
1: The Social Construction of Child Maltreatment.
2: Overview of Child Maltreatment.
3: Child Fatalities Due to Maltreatment.
4: The Exploitation of Children: Child Labor and Sexual Maltreatment.
5: The Development of the Child Protection System before the 20th Century.
6: The Development of the Child Protection System in the 20th and 21st Centuries.
7: The Nexus of Parental Rights, Children’s Rights, and State Intervention.
8: Out-of-Home Placement: When to Preserve Families or Remove Children.
Appendix A Important Figures in the History of Child Protection.
Appendix B Timeline.
About the Author.