• Entry
  • Reader's guide
  • Entries A-Z
  • Subject index

Incest in Families

  • By: Rebecca M. Bolen
  • In: Encyclopedia of Family Health
  • Edited by: Martha Craft-Rosenberg & Shelley-Rae Pehler
  • Subject:Family Health, Family Policy, Family Law

Incest is a type of sexual abuse that occurs when a family member commits a sexual act against a child in the family. When a parent abuses a child, not only does an act of sexual violation occur, but also a betrayal of trust occurs. The most frequently discussed type of incest is father-daughter incest. This entry discusses legal definitions of incest; its frequency, including reporting patterns; how the study of incest evolved, including theories that help to understand it; the dynamics of father-daughter and other types of incest; and its effects.

Legal Definitions

Incest laws vary from state to state, typically by the relationship of the offender to the child, the type of act, the age of the victim, the nonconsensual nature of the abuse, ...

    • Loading...
    locked icon

    Sign in to access this content

    Get a 30 day FREE TRIAL

    • Watch videos from a variety of sources bringing classroom topics to life
    • Read modern, diverse business cases
    • Explore hundreds of books and reference titles