Child Abuse in a Social Drama Film

  • J. Emmett Winn


RADIO FLYER: THE THERAPEUTIC RHETORIC OF CHILD ABUSE IN A SOCIAL DRAMA FILM The United States continues to experience many social problems despite its relative wealth and power. The steady rise in child abuse is one of the most frightening. As Marc Miringoff and Marque-Luisa Miringoff point out, "Since 1976, child abuse has worsened by more than 300 percent" (75). The US Department of Health and Human Services reports that from 1986 to 1993 the abuse rates almost doubled. One might hope that much of this increase could be attributed to a rise in public awareness and, hence, an increase in the reporting of child abuse. Regrettably this is not the case. The escalations are "so dramatic the researchers judged them to be a ‘true rise' in the severity of the problem" (Miringoff & Miringoff 75). The problem is fatally severe. The National Committee to Prevent Child Abuse reports...