Depression and Aggression in Family Interaction

By Gerald R. Patterson | Go to book overview

weighed against the disadvantages of the limit on how much data can be collected using in-person or telephone data collection procedures. Although it is possible to collect contextual data on family violence using social surveys, it is much more difficult to collect these data with a survey instrument than by other means. Surveys tend to be unable to adquately collect data from members of the lowest socioeconomic groups. Because the base rate of the severest forms of violence is so low, surveys also fail to locate adequate numbers of family members experiencing the most injurious or life threatening abuse.


Towards Improved Research on Family Violence

There is no question that if we are to improve our understanding of family violence, there are many research issues and problems that need to be overcome and solved. First and foremost, the field of family violence must continue to improve upon the definitions of abuse, violence, and the family. Until such time as the majority of investigators are employing similar definitions for the central concepts in the field, confusion and contradiction will dominate the study of family violence.

More research studies need to be based on larger and more representative samples. There is a compelling need to collect data which can be generalized to larger populations. Survey research is a means of generating a general causal model of family violence. Such a model could then be subjected to more intensive investigation using smaller samples and more intensive assessment with psychometrically sound measures.

Although the problems of fielding adequate longitudinal designs are many, there is a need to employ more of these designs. Change and time order should not exclusively be inferred from cross-sectional data. Panel and cohort studies are a necessity if knowledge of family violence is to be advanced.

Students of family violence need to attend to the major measurement issues in the study of violence and aggression. The field has been well served by the Conflict Tactics Scales, but a single scale is not a solution to measurement problems. Weis ( 1987) points out that there is not one validation study of family violence yet published. An experimental design which compares measures on the same sample is imperative.

The field must move beyond accepting conventional wisdoms and post hoc conclusions as theory. For the study of family violence to be truly advanced, programs of research must begin to test the various notions, hypotheses, and propositions which have been developed over the past 25 years.


ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

This paper is part of the Family Violence Research Program at the University of Rhode Island. The program is funded by a grant from the National Institute of

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Depression and Aggression in Family Interaction
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents v
  • Preface xi
  • References xiv
  • 1: The Family Research Consortium: At the Crest of a Major Wave? 1
  • 2: Developmental Epidemiological Framework for Family Research on Depression and Aggression 11
  • References 46
  • 3: Methodological Issues in the Study of Family Violence 49
  • Conclusion 70
  • Acknowledgments 71
  • References 72
  • 4: How Marriages Change 75
  • ACKNOWLEDGMENT 99
  • References 100
  • 5: A Contextual Approach to the Problem of Aversive Practices in Families 103
  • Conclusion 123
  • ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS 124
  • References 124
  • 6: Statistical Methods for Analyzing Family Interaction 131
  • Summary 165
  • Acknowledgments 165
  • References 166
  • 7: Family Environments of Depressed and Well Parents and Their Children: Issues of Research Methods 169
  • Conclusion 182
  • Acknowledgments 183
  • References 183
  • 8 - Maternal Depression, Marital Discord, and Children's Behavior: A Developmental Perspective 185
  • Acknowledgments 204
  • References 204
  • 9: Initiation and Maintenance of Process Disrupting Single- Mother Families 209
  • Acknowledgments 242
  • References 243
  • 10: Method Variance in Structural Equation Modeling: Living with "Glop" 247
  • References 276
  • 11: Reflections: A Conceptual Analysis and Synthesis 281
  • References 312
  • Author Index 315
  • Subject Index 325
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