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Children Forsaken

Tags: Early Years, Education, Nursing, Social Work

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Children Forsaken

Child Abuse from Ancient to Modern Times

AUTHOR : By Steven Walker

ISBN : 9781913453817

Edition No : 1

Publication : May 17, 2021

Extent : 184 pgs

ISBN : 9781913453831

Edition No : 1

Publication : May 17, 2021

Extent : 184 pgs

ISBN : 9781913453824

Edition No : 1

Publication : May 17, 2021

Extent : 188 pgs

ISBN : 9781913453848

Edition No : 1

Publication : May 17, 2021

Extent : 288 pgs


A shocking reminder of the cruel history of childhood that has been largely hidden and forgotten.

Children Forsaken
provides a long, historical, overarching examination of the phenomenon of child abuse. In the UK battered child syndrome was 'discovered' in the 1960s, whilst child sexual abuse gained attention in the early 1980s. Subsequent enquiries, legislation and practice developments have focused narrowly on reacting to events giving the impression that child abuse is a recent problem.

Yet the historical record provides a multitude of examples of the ritual slaughter, sexual and physical abuse of children continuing since Ancient times. This book place child abuse in the context of the way children and childhood have been understood throughout the ages, but also show that despite legal definitions, and children's rights laws, children and young people continue to suffer.

This book enables practitioners and those training in the helping professions to gain a deeper understanding of how embedded in human society child abuse has been and still is. Practitioners need to perceive child abuse as a long-standing problem about children's status in the World, their legal and human rights, and that much work is still needed to ensure children's needs and safety are paramount.


1. Child abuse in ancient times 

2: Fairy tales, folklore and religion

3. Defining child abuse 

4. Revealing child abuse 

5: Children as labour 

6. Child sexual abuse becomes public 

7. The Contemporary picture 

8. Changing perceptions of children 

9. Children’s rights and parents support


Steven Walker is an Alumnus of the London School of Economics and Political Science, where he gained an MSc in Social Work and Social Policy. He has an MPhil in Child and Adolescent Mental Health and qualified as a Psychotherapist in 1992. Steven worked in Child Protection and CAMHS for 20 years and then Head of Child and Adolescent Mental Health at Anglia Ruskin University, where he designed and developed award-winning multi-disciplinary CAMH training.

Steven has published 14 text books, presented his research at 15 International Conferences and published over 50 scholarly papers for International Journals. Steven is a former Unicef Children's Champion, a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, and a member of the International Council of Professional Therapists. He works as an Expert Witness in Child Care and CAMHS legal cases, a visiting lecturer at the University of Essex, a volunteer Psychotherapist with the Youth Enquiry Service charity and is a member of the Children and Young Peoples Mental Health Coalition.

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Your Reviews on this book

The various historical constructions of childhood, child abuse and children's rights present us with evidence of the terrible ubiquity of child mistreatment, its changing forms and the necessity of child safeguarding and protection. This ambitious book paints an important and erudite picture of child abuse and social responses to it, bringing us up-to-date with a call for continued vigilance, compassion, and action.

Professor Jonathan Parker Professor of Society & Social Welfare, Bournemouth University

Steven has done a vast amount of research covering a massive range of topics and international perspectives. I admire him for embarking on this massive adventure. He has brought into focus child abuse previously raised in disparate ways not brought together before in one place.

Dr Liz Davies Emeritus Professor of Social Work, London Metropolitan University

Steven Walker’s book is an erudite and articulate antidote to the dominant Anglo-American narrative that child abuse was ‘discovered’ in the 1960s. It presents an analysis with a global sweep, starting in Jericho in 7,000BC and finishing with the latest debates about the relationship between child abuse and poverty. Challenging popular notions that child abuse is perpetrated by evil or irrational individuals, it examines how child abuse has been woven into the fabric of our societies. A fascinating and thought-provoking read for anyone who wants to understand our current responses to child abuse

Dr Andrew Whittaker Associate Professor in Social Work and Head of the Serious Violence Research Group, London South Bank University
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