Frequencies of child abuse in Japan: Hidden but prevalent crime

Toshinori Kitamura, Nobuhiko Kijima, Noboru Iwata, Yukiko Senda, Koji Takahashi, Ikue Hayashi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Citations (Scopus)


A total of 98 women newly employed by a company in Tokyo were interviewed and asked to recall the frequency of abuse they experiences as children. If the abuse is defined as an act occurring at least several times a month, the rates of the fathers' emotional neglect, threat, shaming the children, slapping, punching with a fist, kicking, hitting with an object, and burning were 5%, 3%, 1%, 4%, 3%, 0%, 0%, and 0%, respectively, whereas the corresponding rates of the mothers' acts were 9%, 5%, 2%, 0%, 1%, 0%, 1%, and 0%, respectively. None of the children who had been abused at least several times a month reported having sought other people's help. This study suggests that child abuse in Japan is no less prevalent than in the Western countries and that most abuse cases are unidentified and therefore go unrelieved by intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-33
Number of pages13
JournalInternational Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1999 Mar
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Applied Psychology


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