Edited by: Valerie Polakow
Publication Date: December 1, 2000
Does our society care about its children? This provocative and in-depth examination of violence in the lives of children uncovers the conditions and social policies that perpetuate violence. In addition, this volume forces us to look at other forms of violence confronting children in families, neighborhoods, and schools:
The pre-eminent contributors to this volume examine these issues from both historical and contemporary public policy perspectives. They address the myths and realities of youth violence and the impact of poverty, race, and gender. Prevailing ideas about punishment and retribution, the role of the state in terms of private or public responsibility, and the developmental needs of the child are all themes that frame the multiple advocacy perspectives presented by these cogent essays.
This indispensable, fact-filled volume gets behind the soundbites about "superpredators" and “welfare moms" to reveal the violence, poverty, educational neglect, and social disregard that shape the lives of poor children. Everyone who works with kids—or who has one—should read it.
—Katha Pollitt, Columnist, The Nation
“Polakow’s book is key in alerting Americans about the dangers of ‘get tough’ policies aimed at children. The contributors illustrate effectively and eloquently that our society is quite backward in respecting the interests, indeed, even the human rights of our children. They not only critique current polices that are misguided, but offer several approaches that provide hope and opportunity for all our children, and thereby serve to strengthen social democracy in the United States."
—James Jennings, Senior Fellow at the Trotter Institute, University of Massachusetts, Boston