Dissociation : Vol. 3, No. 1, p. 022-030 : Multiple Personality Disorder and Satanic Ritual Abuse: The Issue of Credibility

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Title: Dissociation : Vol. 3, No. 1, p. 022-030 : Multiple Personality Disorder and Satanic Ritual Abuse: The Issue of Credibility
Author: Van Benschoten, Susan C.
Abstract: The issue of satanic ritual abuse has gained widespread public and professional attention in the past 10 years. During therapy, many adult MPD (multiple personality disorder) patients describe memories of such abuse beginning in childhood. Simultaneously, there are pre-school children reporting current incidents of sexual and physical abuse involving satanism in day care settings. Professionals specifically addressing the day care cases have attempted to delineate features which distinguish ritual abuse from traditional conceptualizations of child abuse. The characteristics of ritual abuse which they have identified are presented, as well as similarities and differences between the child and adult MPD patients' reports. Inevitable questions regarding the validity and accuracy' of MPD patients' satanic abuse memories are explored. The substantiated occurrence of ritual abuse in contemporary, non-satanic, dangerous cults is discussed as a framework for considering the authenticity of MPD patients' satanic abuse accounts. It is proposed that an attitude of critical judgement concerning reports of satanic ritual abuse is necessary, to avoid either denying the issue or over-generalizing the nature and extent of the problem.
Description: p. 022-030
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1794/1492
Date: 1990-03


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