Knowledge, Attitudes and Practices of Corporal Punishment in Bahamian Homes

William J. Fielding, Virginia Ballance


In an Internet-based study, 1,583 Bahamian adults living in The Bahamas were asked about their knowledge, attitudes, and practices relating to corporal punishment. The study confirmed the attitudes and practices towards corporal punishment reported in other studies. Both male and female respondents were physically punished as children (92.4% of males and 87.1% of females). The study indicated that a limited number of participants had knowledge of the detrimental effects of corporal punishment; for example, 28% of male and 36.2% of female participants agreed that corporal punishment was associated with learning problems at school. Respondents with more knowledge about the effects of corporal punishment were less likely to use disciplinary methods of concern. There was a strong link between knowledge and attitudes and between attitudes and experiences of physical punishment in the childhood of respondents. The data suggest that education about the detrimental effects of corporal punishment could help to reduce its use and prevent children from suffering the unintended consequences of corporal punishment.


Corporal punishment of children; Discipline; Punishment; Child rearing

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