Emory Report
September 20, 2004
Volume 57, Number 05


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September 20 , 2004
Family Forum focuses on ‘Challenge of Children’

By elaine justice & katherine baust

The challenge of raising children during a time of politically charged faith based-initiatives, controversial corporal punishment, crisis in the African American family and widespread juvenile violence is the focus of the Family Forum Series 2004–2005, sponsored by the Center for the Interdisciplinary Study of Religion (CISR).

“Our current focus at the CISR is on children—their being and becoming, birth and growth,” said CISR director John Witte, Jonas Robitscher Professor of Law and Ethics. “This year’s Family Forum Series explores the difficulties children and those raising them must face, from proper discipline to violent behavior.”

The Family Forum Series will kick off Monday, Sept. 27, at noon in the School of Law’s Tull Auditorium, with the lecture, “Why Churches Say No: Challenges Faith-Based Initiatives Pose to Religion & Family,” presented by Steve Tipton, professor of sociology of religion.

Tipton’s lecture will examine the effectiveness of the Bush administration’s faith-based initiatives and explore the policies by looking at the “controversy focused on the dangers of its violating the separation of church and state to risk religious meddling in publicly funded social-welfare efforts,” he said.

Other offerings in the Family Forum Series include:

Spare the Rod: Legal and Religious Challenges in Raising Children of the Book. Murray Strauss, professor of sociology and co-director of the Family Research Laboratory at the University of New Hampshire, and a panel of respondents will examine the issue of discipline from religious and legal perspectives. Opening by WSB-TV’s Monica Kaufman. Oct. 6, 2:30 p.m. Reception follows.

Fatherhood, Children and Family: Challenges in African American Communities. Robert Franklin, Presidential Distinguished Professor of Social Ethics, will explore institutional and cultural crisis in four sectors of African American life: family, church, black colleges and civil rights organizations. Feb. 2, noon.

Perpetrators and Victims: Challenges of Children of Violence. Robyn Fivush, Samuel Candler Dobbs Professor of Psychology, will discuss child/adolescent victims of violence; and Peter Ash, associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, will explore youthful perpetrators of violence. March 23, noon.
Established in 2000 with a five-year grant from the Pew Charitable Trusts and with matching funds and endowment support from Emory, the CISR is devoted to advanced study of the intersection of religion, law and society.

All events will take place in Tull Auditorium, and are free and open to the public. For more information, call 404-712-8710 or go to www.law.emory.edu/cisr.