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Journal Article

The Cycle of Violence

Cathy Spatz Widom
Science
New Series, Vol. 244, No. 4901 (Apr. 14, 1989), pp. 160-166
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1702789
Page Count: 7
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The Cycle of Violence
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Abstract

Despite widespread belief that violence begets violence, methodological problems substantially restrict knowledge of the long-term consequences of childhood victimization. Empirical evidence for this cycle of violence has been examined. Findings from a cohort study show that being abused or neglected as a child increases one's risk for delinquency, adult criminal behavior, and violent criminal behavior. However, the majority of abused and neglected children do not become delinquent, criminal, or violent. Caveats in interpreting these findings and their implications are discussed in this article.

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