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“These essays are exemplary in conceptualization, organization, and delivery. The messages are crystal clear, the readability superb. This book stands as a model of editorial excellence. The design of the volume is unique and responds well to a clear need in the subdiscipline of family violence, which remains fraught with diversity and dissention…. This piece of work is honest and effectively illuminates the growing pains of a very young and ideologically loaded subdiscipline that is anchored by an interdisciplinary and heterogeneous collection of smart people. Current Controversies on Family Violence is a powerful addition to the family violence literature. I recommend it as required reading for family violence courses. Gelles and Loseke are to be commended for their excellent idea, their ...

Protecting Children Is More Important Than Preserving Families
Protecting children is more important than preserving families
Richard J.Gelles

It is difficult to disagree with the way this controversy is phrased. Family preservation should be an important goal in child abuse and neglect intervention. Parents in the United States have constitutional rights and are afforded constitutional protection in the raising of their own children. U.S. law and tradition grant parents broad discretion in how they rear their children. In Smith v. Organization of Foster Families for Equality and Reform (1977), the U.S. Supreme Court held that the 14th Amendment gave parents a “constitutionally recognized liberty interest” in maintaining the custody of their children “that derives from blood relationship, state law sanction, and basic human right” (846). This interest ...

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