By Michael King
By means of exploring such different concerns because the administration of kid abuse, criminal reforms following intercourse abuse enquiries, ethical motives for the activities of kid murderers, the very unlikely activity confronted by means of social employees and the restrictions of kid's rights campaigns, Michael King examines the progressive principles of the social theorist, Niklas Luhmann. He demonstrates how Luhmann's idea of authopoietic structures compels readers to reassess precisely what they suggest via society. wondering the connection among own morality and political will, it demanding situations the idea that altering society is basically an issue of fixing attitudes and highlights the pitfalls linked to formulating social reform.
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Additional info for A Better World For Children: Explorations in Morality and Authority (1997)
Does a parent hitting a child constitute abuse or lawful disciplining? Today’s abuse includes much that was yesterday’s punishment’ (Gordon, 1988, p. 177). Is ritual facial scarring or circumcision abusive when not to be scarred or circumcised would mean that the child would be treated as an outcast by its community? Is causing minor physical injury to children in, for example, punishment for misbehaviour, considered abusive only because it does not conform to prevailing Western child rearing practices?
It is these male-dominated institutions which are seen ideologically as representing the forces opposed to a better society and yet the anti-child abuse campaigners are obliged to rely upon the continuing operations of these institutions to achieve their vision of a better society. The problem seen in autopoietic terms is by now a familiar one. It consists of finding ways to transform moral statements into social action, given the fragmented nature of authority in modern society and the self-referring nature of the social systems which society has designated as sites of authority.
Those accounts of what is good or bad for children’s interests and what will be good or bad for them in the future—such as court welfare reports, psychiatric assessments, scientific findings, judge’s decisions, acts of parliament, or policy papers—which carry authority in modern society, do not today take the form of personal beliefs. In order to be recognized as socially authoritative, their decisions must conform, both in the language in which they are written and the reasoning which led the writers to their conclusions, to expectations derived from the particular body that possesses the authority to make such statements.