Joan E Durrant

Joan E Durrant
University of Manitoba | UMN · Department of Community Health Sciences

PhD

About

63
Publications
50,175
Reads
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1,487
Citations
Introduction
I am a Child-Clinical Psychologist and a Professor in the Department of Community Health Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Manitoba. My research interests lie broadly in violence against children, with a particular focus on physical punishment. I am the author of Positive Discipline in Everyday Parenting (PDEP)(www.positivedisciplineeveryday.com), a primary violence prevention program. Currently, my research is focused on the impact of PDEP in highly diverse contexts, as well as issues related to prohibition of physical punishment around the world.
Additional affiliations
June 2008 - July 2008
University of Otago
Position
  • Fellow
January 2003 - April 2003
Stockholm University
Position
  • Researcher
January 1994 - April 1994
University of Gothenburg
Position
  • Researcher
Education
September 1983 - January 1988
University of Windsor
Field of study
  • Child-Clinical Psychology

Publications

Publications (63)
Article
Full-text available
Background Research consistently demonstrates that physical punishment of children including “spanking” is harmful. Interest in effective prevention is growing rapidly. The aim of the current study is to examine spanking beliefs among adolescents and parents in relation to reports of spanking that the adolescents experienced before 11 years of age....
Article
Full-text available
Physical punishment is increasingly viewed as a form of violence that harms children. This narrative review summarises the findings of 69 prospective longitudinal studies to inform practitioners and policy makers about physical punishment's outcomes. Our review identified seven key themes. First, physical punishment consistently predicts increases...
Article
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Physical and emotional punishment of children is highly prevalent in the Asia-Pacific region. These actions predict a range of physical and emotional harms, prompting a worldwide effort to eliminate them. A key strategy in this effort is to change parental beliefs regarding the acceptability of physical and emotional punishment. The Positive Discip...
Article
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Research has consistently found relationships between physical punishment in childhood and mental healthy problems throughout the life course, including anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, alcoholism, substance abuse, and suicidal tendency. In this paper, we apply Eriksonian theory to examine the mechanisms whereby physical punishment may have it...
Article
For centuries, some level of physical violence against children has been normalized, prescribed and legally justified. It has long been argued that violence is not abusive if it is intended as punishment and does not injure the child physically. This proposition has heavily influenced our language, research methods and approaches to intervention wi...
Article
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Physical punishment of children is linked to negative developmental outcomes. The widely used Positive Parenting Program (Triple P) promotes alternative responses to physical punishment. Data on the effectiveness of the Triple P Seminar Series is limited. In this study, Canadian parents’ reports of physical punishment, non-physical punishment, and...
Article
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Most physical violence against children in their homes is rooted in physical punishment. Parents’ approval of physical punishment is a primary predictor of its use. Therefore, reducing approval of physical punishment is critical to preventing physical violence against children. We explored the relative contributions of four variables to young adult...
Article
The strong and ever-growing evidence base demonstrating that physical punishment places children at risk for a range of negative outcomes, coupled with global recognition of chil-dren's inherent rights to protection and dignity, has led to the emergence of programs specifically designed to prevent physical punishment by parents. This paper describe...
Article
Fifty-two countries have abolished all physical punishment of children, yet Canada has retained its criminal defense to 'reasonable' corrective force. In 2004, Canada's Supreme Court attempted to set limits on punitive acts that can be considered reasonable under the law. In the present study, we examined the validity of these limits. If the court'...
Article
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While the word " discipline " has come to connote control, punishment and obedience, its historic roots are in notions of learning, understanding and gaining knowledge. We trace concepts of discipline through time – from extreme violence to behaviourism to constructivism to relational neuroscience – and arrive at a reframing of discipline as a proc...
Article
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Every day, almost one billion children around the world experience violent punishment. Eliminating all violence against children is a key target of the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This is a monumental challenge due to the diversity of cultural, economic and social contexts in which children live. Violence-prevention pro...
Article
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This commentary addresses the critique by Larzelere, Gunnoe, Roberts, and Ferguson (2017: Marriage & Family Review, 53, 24–35) ostensibly concerning the quality of research on “positive parenting” but actually critiquing physical punishment research. The critique revealed that the authors have a poor understanding of positive parenting. After expli...
Article
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This commentary addresses the critique by Larzelere, Gunnoe, Roberts, and Ferguson (2016: Marriage and Family Review, 53, 24–35) ostensibly concerning the quality of research on “positive parenting” but actually critiquing corporal punishment research. The critique revealed that the authors have a poor understanding of positive parenting. After exp...
Article
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Over the past quarter century, research on physical punishment has proliferated. Almost without exception, these studies have identified physical punishment as a risk factor in children’s behavioral, emotional, cognitive and brain development. At the same time, the United Nations has established that physical punishment constitutes a breach of chil...
Article
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This study examined whether parental corporal punishment (CP) was associated with children's externalizing and prosocial behaviors 2 years later. The potential moderating effects of child temperament, maternal depression, and parenting skills were explored. Also, exploratory analyses of these associations were conducted according to the children's...
Poster
Full-text available
Corporal punishment has long been valued as a disciplinary strategy. However, it is now legally prohibited in many countries, because of its potentially negative impacts (Durrant & Ensom, 2012). Yet, even though its use has declined over the last 15 years (Clément & Chamberland, 2014), each year in the United States, more than half of parents have...
Article
It is well documented that corporal punishment-commonly referred to as spanking or smacking-has numerous detrimental effects on children's development. Corporal punishment has been linked to aggressive and antisocial behaviour, impaired parent-child relationships, mental health issues and decreased self-regulation, and violent crimes and delinquenc...
Article
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Joan e. durrant, department of Family Social Sciences, university of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB; christine ateah, Faculty of nursing, university of Manitoba; ashley Stewart-tufescu, applied Health Sciences, university of Manitoba; alysha Jones, department of Family Social Sciences, university of Manitoba; gia ly, department of Family Social Sciences, u...
Conference Paper
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In 2010, Canada accepted approximately 25,000 refugees. Of these, 25% were children under the age of 15. Refugee children often have experienced trauma, exploitation and human rights violations, which can make it difficult for them to become fully included in the society they are entering. The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (C...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
This paper will explore the unfolding of a global phenomenon – the legal prohibition of corporal punishment of children. Until 35 years ago, this near-universal practice was considered appropriate, necessary and a parental right. But a paradigm shift in conceptions of childhood has led to a global movement to redefine it as violence and as a violat...
Article
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Over the past two decades, we have seen an international shift in perspectives concerning the physical punishment of children. In 1990, research showing an association between physical punishment and negative developmental outcomes was starting to accumulate, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child had just been adopted by the General Assembl...
Article
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In 2004, the Supreme Court of Canada set out seven criteria to distinguish reasonable from abusive corrective force with children. We tested the validity of those criteria by mapping them onto a nationally representative data set of substantiated cases of physical abuse. The court's criteria defining reasonable force actually characterized the majo...
Article
Full-text available
This study examined the power of child, perpetrator, and socio-economic characteristics to predict injury in cases of reported child physical abuse. The study was designed to assess the validity of the assumption that physically injurious incidents of child physical abuse are qualitatively different from those that do not result in injury, that the...
Article
In 2004, the Supreme Court of Canada upheld the legal justification for physical punishment of children, but limited its protection to minor force applied by non-frustrated parents, with the hand, to children between the ages of 2 and 12. This double message - that physical punishment is justifiable but only under limited conditions - is potentiall...
Article
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Once considered a legitimate parenting tool, physical punishment is increasingly being redefined as a developmental risk factor by health professionals. Three forces that have contributed to this significant social change are the evolution of pediatric psychology, increasing understanding of the dynamics of parental violence, and growing recognitio...
Article
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The influence of family poverty on professionals’ decision-making in cases of physical punishment reported to child welfare agencies was examined. The sample was drawn from the Canadian Incidence Study of Reported Child Abuse and Neglect. The influence of five indicators of poverty on six investigation outcomes was assessed. In addition, a Poverty...
Article
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Over the past 70 years, Sweden has implemented a series of proactive legal reforms aimed at eliminating the corporal punishment of children in homes, schools and institutions. The most recent of these reforms took place in 1979 when Sweden became the first nation to explicitly abolish corporal punishment. The primary purposes of the ban were to rec...
Article
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The objective was to examine the roles of cognition and affect in maternal use of physical punishment. Through a review of the literature, distal and proximal predictors (cognitive and affective) of physical punishment use were identified. One hundred and ten mothers of 3-year-old children were interviewed regarding two disciplinary situations that...
Article
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The purpose of the present study was to examine the cultural embeddedness of the notions of hierarchy and solidarity in parent-child relationships at the macro and micro levels in two nations. Mothers' beliefs about and use of physical punishment in Sweden, where parental use of physical punishment has been prohibited by law, were compared to those...
Article
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This chapter examines the normative and structural framework of the Charter, highlighting its unique strengths and weaknesses within the broader African human rights context. Like the Convention, the Charter is predicated on four cardinal principles which are meant to help with the interpretation of the Charter as a whole and thereby guide national...
Article
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Currently, the Criminal Code of Canada provides a defence to assault for persons in authority who use physical punishment with children. This defence has been challenged in the Ontario courts on the grounds that it violates children's constitutional rights. Some child welfare authorities fear that if the defence were repealed the child protection s...
Article
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Trends in the well-being of Swedish youth were examined to determine whether they have shown improvement or deterioration since the passage of the 1979 corporal punishment ban. Rates of youth involvement in crime, alcohol and drug use, rape, and suicide have decreased. Trends in rates of nonsexual assault are equivocal due to shifts in enforcement....
Article
Full-text available
In 1979, Sweden became the first nation to explicitly prohibit all forms of corporal punishment of children by all caretakers in an effort to: (1) alter public attitudes toward this practice; (2) increase early identification of children at risk for abuse; and (3) promote earlier and more supportive intervention to families. The aim of this study w...
Article
Full-text available
On 1 July 1979, a law went into effect in Sweden that outlawed all forms of physical punishment of children, including that administered by parents. While the history of this law has been fully described elsewhere, scant attention has been paid to the political and social contexts in which the law emerged and found public support. It is argued in t...
Article
A review of 208 studies of children with learning disabilities (LD) published in 10 major journals between 1988 and 1990 was conducted to determine the extent to which recommendations made in 1980 and 1984 regarding reporting and design of LD research have been followed. A number of problems continue to threaten the interpretability and utility of...
Article
The purpose of the present study was to investigate whether different behavioral subgroups of children with learning disabilities (LD) form different beliefs regarding the causes of their achievement-related successes and failures. The sample (n = 75) was composed of five carefully matched groups of 15 children: (a) nondisabled, non-behavior-disord...
Article
This study assessed perceived competence in 60 children (aged 8–13 yrs) who were classified into 4 carefully matched groups: (1) non-learning-disabled (non-LD), non-behavior-disordered, (2) LD, non-behavior-disordered, (3) LD with externalizing symptoms, and (4) LD with externalizing and internalizing symptoms. Results indicated that the scores of...
Article
This study assessed perceived competence in 60 children, aged 8 to 13 years, who were classified into 4 carefully matched groups: (a) non-learning-disabled (non-LD), non-behavior-disordered, (b) LD, non-behavior-disordered, (c) LD with externalizing symptoms, and (d) LD with externalizing and internalizing symptoms. Results indicated that the score...
Article
Two learning disabled and two learning-disabled attention deficit hyperactivity disordered boys participated in-group problem solving sessions to improve interactions with the attitudes toward a socially rejected autistic classmate. In class positive interactions and negative interactions served as individual baselines within a multiple baseline de...
Article
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The present study sought to shed light on the relative effectiveness of the narrow-band and broad-band intellectual scales of the Personality Inventory for Children (PIC) as screening measures for the need for an intensive assessment. Following family interviews and extensive psychological testing, 40 preschool children had been placed in either th...
Article
Full-text available
Sweden is a country where children's rights and developmental needs occupy the top level of the political agenda. There, child poverty is unacceptable, violence against children is not tolerated, a single child's death is too many – and extensive family support is woven into the fabric of the society. Where other nations have taken a punitive or ne...

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