University of Chicago
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Understanding child sexual abuse: perspectives from the Caribbean
Many forms of child abuse exist. One of the rampant forms of child abuse is Child Sexual Abuse. Child sexual abuse is cruelty committed against children by adults or older adolescents in which the perpetrators use the child for sexual stimulation. Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) occurs in various settings that include home, work or school. The document will highlight various CSA aspects in this case forms of CSA, sociological approach to CSA and mitigation procedures of the vice.
CSA takes many forms. One of them is the act of adults pressuring children to take part in sexual activities no matter the outcome. There is also the indecent exposure of bodily organs such as genitals and female nipples to children by the adults with the intention of gratifying their sexual desires groom or intimidate the child. The other form of CSA is the physical sexual contact occurring between child and an adult (Jones 2013, pp89).
Sociological factors play a part in contributing to forms of CSA. Finkelhor’s model is one of the sociological models used in the classification of CSA. The model offers explanatory power by placing the responsibility of sexual abuse cases with the abuser. One of the sociological factors that lead to cases of CSA as identified by this model is pornography. Pornography leads to Child pornography where children are used to create indecent content and related materials. The other sociological factor that contributes to CSA is the existence of patriarchal prerogatives of men and fathers in some regions which lead to children marriages. With this form of CSA, children are married off to adults (Kuehnle & Connell 2013, pp134).
Sociological factors also play an indirect role in causing cases of CSA. They include Sociological factors, for example, society’s value system and philosophy especially prevailing cultural attitudes on violence. The Cumulative Stress Model has shown that living under harsh economic settings and underprivileged social environment contributes greatly to frustration and stress experienced by people with offspring depending on them. The same leads them to commit sexual related abuse in the dependents (Jones 2013, pp112).
The theory of deprivation cycle also implies that there is a high probability of abuse being repeated in following generations unless the cycle is broken. There is a high risk of children getting sexually abused by adults who were themselves abused when they were kids. This is also a claim that is supported by Edward H. Sutherland, a sociological theorist who believes that any interaction with family members or friends who commit sexual crimes, one ends up picking the same habits as their values and morals thus committing the same crimes (Kuehnle & Connell 2013, pp134).
Sexual child abuse can be tackled by eliminating the causative agents. For those committing sex crimes, they have to be punished by the law. In the process of doing so, the society will be taught the importance of adhering to social behaviors and norms thus preventing future sexual related behaviors. For those who have undergone cases of sexual abuse, counseling will help in the prevention of further implications (Sanderson 2006, pp201).
Child sexual abuse is a common form of abuse in children. There are many causative agents of CSA which makes it take many forms. Some of the causative agents of this vice are direct and indirect sociological aspects. An evaluation and understanding of the many forms of CSA is needed to help in the elimination of the same.
JONES, A. (2013). Understanding child sexual abuse: perspectives from the Caribbean. Hampshire, UK, Palgrave Macmillan.
KUEHNLE, K., & CONNELL, M. (2013). The evaluation of child sexual abuse allegations a comprehensive guide to assessment and testimony. Hoboken, N.J., Wiley. http://rbdigital.oneclickdigital.com.
SANDERSON, C. (2006). Counselling adult survivors of child sexual abuse. London, Jessica Kingsley.