The emerging problem of physical child abuse in South Korea

Hyeouk C. Hahm, Neil B. Guterman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


South Korea has had remarkably high incidence and prevalence rates of physical violence against children, yet the problem has received only limited public and professional attention until very recently. This article represents the first attempt in English to systematically analyze South Korea's recent epidemiological studies on child maltreatment. Discussed are sociocultural factors that have contributed both to delays in child protection laws and a low public awareness of the problem of child abuse. The article highlights methodological issues concerning the definition of physical abuse in South Korea and the complex attitudes toward violence. It also examines the role of the Korean women's movement in the reform of family laws and the recent establishment of new child protection legislation. Suggestions for future directions for the problem of child maltreatment within South Korea are presented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)169-179
Number of pages11
JournalChild Maltreatment
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2001

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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