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Scarlett, J. (1987). The Sexual Abuse of Children. Brit. J. Psychother., 3(4):323-331.

(1987). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 3(4):323-331

The Sexual Abuse of Children

Jean Scarlett

This paper looks at aspects of child abuse: the psychoanalytical approach, the contribution of psychological research and the problems of residential care. It traces Freud's views from his early statement of the part played by sexual trauma in the aetiology of hysteria to hs later emphasis on the role of fantasy. Masson's criticism of Freud and of his attitude to Ferenczi's paper ‘Confusion of Tongues between Adults and the Child’ is discussed.

The paper also deals with the research on personality characteristics of paedophiles and the children involved with them, polarities of viewpoint on the long-term effects of such experiences and, finally, attitudes towards sexuality in residential establishments and the task of staff in fostering the adolescent's emotional development.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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