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Main article: Parenting
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Child discipline an aspect of child rearing practices that draws from a wide range of interested fields, such as Developmental Psychology, Social Work, and various religious perspectives.

Methods of child discipline vary widely between cultures and have in recent times changed considerably in many of them. In western society, there has been much debate in recent years over non-violent child discipline versus spanking or use of a belt in particular and corporal punishment for children in general.

Corporal punishment

Main article: Corporal punishment in the home

United Nations human rights standards prohibit all corporal punishment, including spanking.[1] However, corporal punishment of children is legal in schools in at least 60 nations.[How to reference and link to summary or text] Corporal punishment in schools is legal in 23 states of the United States, except where prohibited by local school boards.

Researchers have linked authoritarian child rearing with children who withdraw, lack spontaneity, and have lesser evidence of conscience.[2]

Corporal punishment has been found to be consistently related to poor mental health; including depression, unhappiness, anxiety, and feelings of hopelessness in children and youth. Corporal punishment is a risk factor for relationship problems, including impairment of parent-child relationships, increased levels of aggression and anti-social behaviour in children, raised thresholds for defining an act as violent, and perpetration of violence as an adult, including abuse of one's family members.

Hart, Stuart N. et al, Eliminating Corporal Punishment. UNESCO Publishing.[3]



  1. Hitting people is wrong – and children are people too.. Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children, Save the Children Sweden. URL accessed on 2007-04-10.
  2. Maccoby, E. E., & Martin, J. A. (1983). Socialization in the context of the family: Parent-child interaction. In Handbook of Child Psychology (4th ed.), edited by P. H. Mussen, vol. 4: Socialization, personality, and social development, edited by E. M. Heatherington, 1-101. New York: Wiley.
  3. Hart, Stuart N. et al. (2005). Eliminating Corporal Punishment. UNESCO Publishing.

See also

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