The RBT Files

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[An Overview] 

[The original articles]   
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[New Articles] 

[Explanatory articles]   
Alphabetically by author

First reactions: 1998, 1999
First round of discussion: 1999 & 2000
Second round of discussion: 2000 & 2001 
Third round of discussion: medium 2001 - 2002 

Ulrich e.a. 2005-2006. 

[Some documents] 

An Overview

Gieles, F. The struggles about the free will, facts and morality , The debate about the publications of Rind, Bauserman & Tromovitch goes on –  a bird’s eye view, 1997 - 2002, In: Ipce Newsletter E 13, June 2002
In this article, I have tried to give an overview of the debate on the Rind et al. publication in 1998 and earlier. It appeared that the debate was hot and that it had several phases. People began to attack without even reading the meta-analysis, and even politicians mixed the discourse about facts and the discourse about morals.  Gradually, the meta-analysis was seriously studied and the debate concentrated on the science and the facts. The science is still in debate, but some facts are acknowledged, and the author and their publications are taken as seri

The original articles

Alphabetically by author

Bauserman, Robert, Objectivity and Ideology, Criticism of Theo Sandfort’s Research on Man-Boy Sexual Relations; Journal of Homosexuality, vol. 20, nr. ½, 1990
Three critiques of Theo Sandfort’s research on man-boy sexual relationships in the Netherlands are examined and evaluated. Three types of criticism - methodological, speculative and moral - are identified. Specific criticisms of the study are evaluated on the basis of their validity and, where appropriate, their underlying assumptions. It is argued that moral condemnation of such relationships, combined with a prevailing ideology of boy "victims" and adult "perpetrators," results in efforts by Sandfort’s critics to attack and discredit his research rather than evaluate it objectively.

Finkelhor, David, Response to Bauserman * , Journal of Homosexuality, 20 - 1/2, 1990
I do not believe that my views about Sandfort's research are accurately represented in Bauserman's article*, and I will try to present them here.
Ultimately, I do continue to believe that the prohibition on adult-child sexual contact is primarily a moral issue. While empirical findings have some relevance they are not the final arbiter. [...]
Some types of social relationships violate deeply held values and principles in our culture about equality and self-determination. Sex between adults and children is one of them. Evidence that certain children have positive experiences does not challenge these values, which have deep roots in our worldview. 

Mrazek, David A., Response to the Bauserman Critique, * Journal of Homosexuality, 20 - 1/2, 1990
Even if this study was methodologically sound, which it certainly is not, on moral grounds alone such "research" cannot be sanctioned. Children are not developmentally prepared to enter into sexual relationships on an informed and equal basis with adults. It is a basic responsibility of society to protect children and foster their development. These children were not adequately protected.

Bauserman, Robert & Rind, Bruce, Psychological Correlates of Male Child and Adolescent Sexual Experiences with Adults:  A Review of the Nonclinical Literature, Archives of Sexual behavior, 26-2, 1997
Researchers have generally neglected sexual experiences of boys with adults, assumed them to be the same as those of girls, or tried to understand them by referring to clinical research while ignoring nonclinical research. 
A review of nonclinical research allows a more complete understanding of boys' sexual experiences with adults and the outcomes and correlates of those experiences.

Rind, B. (1998). Biased Use of Cross-Cultural and Historical Perspectives on Male Homosexuality in Human Sexuality Textbooks. The Journal of Sex Research 35:4, pp. 397-407. A Review by Adam.

Rind, Bruce & Bauserman, Robert, Biased Terminology Effects and Biased Information Processing in Research on Adult-Nonadult Sexual Interactions: An Empirical Investigation; The Journal of Sex Research Vol. 30, No.3, pp. 260-269 August 1993
Adult-child and adult-adolescent sexual interactions have generally been described in the professional literature with value-laden negative terms. Recently, a number of researchers have criticized this state of affairs, claiming that such usage is likely to have biasing effects.
The current investigation examined empirically the biasing impact of negative terminology.
[...] Students' judgments were negatively biased by the negative terminology. The students also exhibited evidence for biased processing of the nonnegative outcome information.

Rind, B., Bauserman, R. & Tromotitch, Ph.,
An Examination of Assumed Properties of Child Sexual Abuse Based on Nonclinical Samples, Paper presented to the symposium sponsored by the Paulus Kerk, Rotterdam, The Netherlands, on the 18th of December 1998.
"The results of our reviews clearly show that the assumptions of most mental health professionals, legislators, law enforcement personnel, media workers, and the lay public that sexual relations defined as CSA cause intense harm pervasively for both boys and girls are vastly exaggerated."
Download as Zipped Html file or as PDF file

Rind, B., Bauserman, R. & Tromotitch, Ph.,
Étude des consequences de l'abus sexual sur enfants, ã partir de cas non cliniques, 
Exposé présenté au symposium patronné par Paulus Kerk à Rotterdam, le 18 Décembre 1998.
Pour recevoir en qualité d'un ZIP Html fichier ou bien d'un .PDF fichier

Rind, Bruce & Tromovitch, Philip, A Meta-Analytic Review of Findings from National Samples on Psychological Correlates of Child Sexual Abuse, The Journal of Sex Research, Vol. 34, No.3, 1997 pp. 237 - 255  
We found that, contrary to the implications and conclusions contained in previous literature reviews that were focused on biased samples, in the general population. CSA is not associated with pervasive harm and that harm, when it occurs, is not typically intense.
Further, CSA experiences for males and females are not equivalent: a substantially lower proportion of males reports negative effects.
Finally, we found that conclusions about a causal link between CSA and later psychological maladjustment in the general population cannot safely be made because of the reliable presence of confounding variables.
We concluded by cautioning that analysis at the population level does not characterize individual cases: When CSA is accompanied by factors such as force or close familial ties, it has the potential to produce significant harm.  

Rind, B., Tromovitch, Ph. & Bauserman, R.,
A Meta-Analytic Examination of Assumed Properties of Child Sexual Abuse Using College Samples, in: Psychological Bulletin 1998, Vol 124, No 1, pp 22-53.
"Self-reported reactions to and effects from CSA* indicated that negative effects were neither pervasive nor typically intense, and that men reacted much less negatively than women. The college data were completely consistent with data from national samples. Basic beliefs about CSA in the general population were not supported."
[* Child Sexual Abuse]
Download as a .PDF file

Tromovitch, Ph., Rind, B. & Bauserman, R., Adult Correlates of Child Sexual Abuse: A meta-analytic review of college student and national probability samples, SSSS-ER April 18, 1997
Child sexual abuse (CSA) is viewed by the lay public, and by many professionals, as one of the most psychologically damaging events that a child or adolescent can experience.
[...] The findings from this report contradict prevalently held assumptions about CSA — assumptions that may bias not only the lay public, but researchers studying and reporting on activities classifiable as CSA.

New articles:

Rind, Bruce, PhD., Gay and Bisexual Adolescent Boys' Sexual Experiences With Men: 
An Empirical Examination of Psychological Correlates in a Nonclinical Sample
, In: Archives of Sexual Behavior, Vol. 30, No.4, 2001
Over the last quarter century the incest model, with its image of helpless victims exploited and traumatized by powerful perpetrators, has come to dominate perceptions of virtually all forms of adult-minor sex. Thus, even willing sexual relations between gay or bisexual adolescent boys and adult men, which differ from father-daughter incest in many important ways, are generally seen by the lay public and professionals as traumatizing and psychologically injurious. This study assessed this common perception by examining a nonclinical, mostly college sample of gay and bisexual men. 
[From the Appendix:]
"It developed over time and was great. We became friends and I invited him over once when my parents weren't home. I practically had to force sex on him because he was afraid about losing his job. Ended when I went away for the summer and he wasn't a teacher at my school no more" 

Some quotes from this article, Ipce newsletter E 13, June 2002

Rind, Bruce, PhD., Las experiencias sexuales de chicos gay y bisexuales adolescentes con hombres: un examen empírico de las correlaciones psicológicas en una muestra no-clínica, Publicado en: Archives of Sexual Behavior, Vol. 30, No. 4, 2001
Sobre los últimos 25 años un modelo de incesto, con su imagen de víctimas indefensas explotadas y traumatizadas por adultos poderosos, ha venido a ser dominante en las percepciones de casi todos los tipos de sexo entre adultos y menores. Así, incluso las relaciones sexuales deseados entre chicos gay / homosexuales o bisexuales adolescentes y hombres adultos -las cuales son diferentes en muchos respectos importantes del incesto entre padres y sus hijas- son generalmente considerados por el público y profesionales traumatizantes y perjudiciales psicológicamente. Este estudio valoró esta percepción común a través de un examen de una muestra no-clínica de hombres gay y bisexuales, la mayoría de ellos estudiantes universitarios. [...]
Caso 1 del Appéndice:
"Desarrolló con el tiempo y era magnífico. Llegamos a ser amigos y yo lo invité a mi casa una vez cuando mis padres no estaban.  Tuve que forzar prácticamente el sexo en él porque él tenía miedo acerca de perder su trabajo. Finalizó cuando yo me fui por el verano y él ya no era un maestro en mi escuela más" 

Rind, Bruce, An Elaboration on Causation and Positive Cases in Child Sexual Abuse; Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice V10 N3, 2003.  Abstract 
Sbraga and O'Donohue (2003, this issue) argued that backward reasoning from current symptomatology to past child sexual abuse (CSA), often done by experts in court cases, is flawed in several important ways.
Backward reasoning, or postdiction, is usually based on models that assume that CSA invariably causes symptoms and that it is always negatively experienced. They demonstrated the weaknesses in these assumptions.

Summary of
Bruce Rind: Pederasty: An Integration of Cross-Cultural, Cross-Species, and Empirical Data
In: Journal of Homosexuality: Same-Sex Desire and Love in Greco-Roman Antiquity and in the Classical Tradition of the West; Volume: 49 Issue: 3/4 2005 
The current article examines empirical rather than clinical data on pederasty, and supplements this with cross-cultural and cross-species perspectives. The empirical data show that pederasty is not only not predestined to injure, but can benefit the adolescent when practiced according to the ancient Greek form. Cross-cultural and cross-species data show the extensiveness of pederasty in the natural world, as well as its functional rather than pathological nature in these societies and species.
An evolutionary model that synthesizes the empirical, cross-cultural, and cross-species data is proposed as an alternative to the highly inadequate feminist and psychiatric models. The animal data suggest that the seeds for pederasty were planted at the dawn of humanity. The human data suggest that pederasty came to serve a mentoring function. 

Rind, Bruce, PhD, An Empirical Examination of Sexual Relations Between Adolescents and Adults. They Differ from Those Between Children and Adults and Should Be Treated Separately - In: Journal of Psychology & Human Sexuality Volume: 16 Issue: 2/3, 2004, pp 55 - 62 - And in: Adolescence, Sexuality, and the Criminal Law - Multidisciplinairy Perspectives; Helmut Graupner & Vern L. Bullough (Editors), The Haworth Press, 2004

For heterosexual adolescent boys involved with women and for gay/bisexual adolescent boys involved with men, the non-clinical empirical data are strongly at odds with the assumption of trauma. [...] In these relations, the data point more directly to psychological benefit than harm. 

Rind, Bruce & Tromovitch, Philip, National Samples, Sexual Abuse in Childhood, and Adjustment in Adulthood; A Commentary on Najman, Dunne, Purdie, Boyle, and Coxeter (2005); Archives of Sexual Behavior; December 2006 
Based on the foregoing analyses, a more appropriate ending to their Abstract would be: “CSA in the Australian population is common but, according to the data in the current study, is only weakly associated with poorer sexual functioning in adulthood. Whether this association is causal, however, needs further study.”

Najman, Jake; Dunne, Michael; Purdie, David; Boyle, Francis; Coxeter, Peter; Sexual Abuse in Childhood and Sexual Dysfunction in Adulthood: An Australian Population-Based Study; Archives of Sexual Behavior, Volume 34, Number 5, October 2005 , pp. 517-526(10) - Abstract
This study examined self-reported adult sexual functioning in individuals reporting a history of childhood sexual abuse (CSA) in a representative sample of the Australian population. 
More than one-third of women and approximately one-sixth of men reported a history of CSA.
For both sexes, there was a significant association between CSA and symptoms of sexual dysfunction. In assessing the specific nature of the relationship between sexual abuse and sexual dysfunction, statistically significant associations were, in general, evident for women only. 

About the Meta-Analyse: 1. Explanatory articles 

Alphabetically by author

Arbeitsgemeinschaft Humane Sexualität e.V., Archiv, Dr. Rind, Dr. Bauserman, Dr. Tromovitch ... wo die Freiheit der Wissenschaft endet.   
Eine Studie über den sexuellen Missbrauch von Kindern, die in der renommierten, amerikanischen Psychologenzeitschrift "Psychological Bulletin" veröffentlicht wurde, erzeugte eine unglaubliche Kontroverse. Die darin veröffentlichte, Meta-analytische Studie von Dr. Rind, Dr. Bauserman und Dr. Tromovitch untersuchte anhand von 59 vorhandenen Untersuchungen über College-Studenten, die wissenschaftliche Genauigkeit des Begriffes "sexueller Missbrauch". Die Ergebnisse legten nahe, dass die Schädlichkeit sexueller Kontakte zwischen Erwachsenen und Kindern deutlich geringer ist, als allgemein angenommen. "Sexueller Missbrauch" impliziert nicht zwingend Schaden und für bereitwillige Kinder können sexuelle Kontakte möglicherweise positiv sein.

Arcados, traduction de ce site web: Un Compte-rendu de A Meta-Analystic Examination of Assumed Properties of Child Sexual Abuse Using College Samples, Bruce RIND, Philip TROMOVITCH, Robert BAUSERMAN 
N'ayant  les compétences requises ni en sociologie ni en statistique pour nous permettre de juger de la valeur de cette étude, nous ne sommes pas à même de nous prononcer à son sujet. Notons seulement que, si l'American Psychological Association a cherché à prendre ses distances avec les conclusions de ces auteurs, elle a réaffirmé la validité méthodologique de l'étude.

Ferguson, Bob, Youthful Sexual Experience and Well-being, Important Conference in Rotterdam, in: Koinos Magazine #21 (1999/1)

Ferguson, Bob, Sexuelle Erfahrungen in der Jugend und Wohlbefinden, Interessantes Symposion in Rotterdam, in: Koinos Magazine #21 (1999/1)

Gieles, F.E.J., Mister President..., The USA is shocked by the research of Rind, Bauserman & Tromovitch; chronological overview of the critical reactions; in: Ipce Newsletter E6, July 1999

Gieles, F.E.J., An Explanation of the statistics, used in the Meta-analysis, in: Ipce Newsletter E7, December 1999

G. G., Radical Reconsideration of the Concept of Child Sexual Abuse, New Findings by Bauserman, Rind and Tromovitch, in: Koinos Magazine #20 (1998/4)

G. G., Grundlegende Änderung des Begriffs ‘Sexueller Kindesmißbrauch’, Neue Erkenntnisse von Bauserman, Rind und Tromovitch, in: Koinos Magazine #20 (1998/4)

Harris, C, Prof. Harris replies to a student 
Prof. Harris
I really enjoyed today's lecture on divorce. However, I am very intrigued by your thoughts on abuse. I was extremely concerned when you mentioned that not everyone who is abused as a child, is scarred for life. [..]
[...] Rind, Tromovitch and Bauserman found that many other factors predicted personality and adult adjustment, such as family conflict, parental strife, chaotic household, low income, parent with a psychiatric disorder, and so on.
These factors are correlated with CSA (just as they are with divorce)!  Once these factors are taken into account, CSA itself has no additional predictive validity.   So we can't attributed poor adult adjustment to CSA, because the factors which are correlated with CSA are sufficient to cause poor adult adjustment.  [...]

NAMBLA: Buenas noticias sobre el amor entre hombres y niños 
Traducción: Ipce 
Un análisis recientemente publicado sobre 59 estudios distintos acerca de la sexualidad de los jóvenes acaba de aparecer en el prestigioso Psychological Bulletin. Utilizando una poderosa técnica denominada «metaanálisis», el análisis demuestra que la guerra actual contra los boylovers no tiene ninguna base científica. 

About the Meta-Analysis: 2. Discussion 

First reactions: 1998, 1999
First round of discussion: 1999 & 2000
Second round of discussion: 2000 & 2001 
Third round of discussion: mid-2001 - 2002

First reactions: 1998 & 1999 

Rainer, Paul, Schrille Fanfare, in: Der Spiegel, 2 Aug. 1999

Rainer, Paul, Strident Attack, translated from Der Spiegel, 2 Aug 1999 with Comment.

Rind, B., Tromovitch, Ph. & Bauserman, R.,
The Clash of Media, Politics, and Sexual Science: An examination of the controversy surrounding the Psychological Bulletin meta-analysis on the assumed properties of child sexual abuse,
Talk presented at the 1999 Joint Annual meeting of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS) and the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT) November 6th, 1999 (St. Louis, Missouri).
Nine months after publication in Psychological Bulletin, our analysis of the college student data came under intense attack by the radical right with assistance from traumatologists associated with the left. This controversy recently culminated with the U.S. House of Representatives condemning the article in a 355-0 vote. We will briefly summarize the methods and findings of our analyses, then focus on subsequent events.

First round of discussion: 1999 & 2000

Berry, Kenneth K. & Berry, Jason, The Congressional censure of a research paper: Return to the Inquisition? From: Skeptical Inquirer Electronic Digest, Commentary in the issue dated December 10, 1999 
We have taken the first large and frightening step away from scientific freedom and toward totalitarianism in control of scientific endeavors.

Gieles, F.E.J., Science and Morality or The Rind et al. Controversy, The counter arguments replied, in: Ipce Newsletter E7, December 1999
[...] Science should give the facts and has the right and obligation to do this; the media has to inform the public correctly; politicians should honestly lead the process of decision making in moral matters. [...]
This discussion, about moral matters, is a different kind of discussion; it differs from the discussion about the facts in every aspect of the discourse. It’s another kind of discourse, as Habermas showed us. The U.S. Congress has interchanged both kinds of discourses.

Ericksen, Julia A., Sexual liberation's last frontier, in: Society May-June 2000, 37-4.
It is appropriate to undertake such research if only to wrest the terms of the debate from conservatives who have used pedophilia as a way to silence all attempts at sexual tolerance.

Haaken, Janice & Lamb, Sharon, Politics of CSA research, in: Society, May-June 2000, 37-4
Haaken and Lamb attempt to steer a middle ground between a social constructionist or culturally relative position on sexuality on the one hand, and an approach that emphasizes universal principles of justice and care on the other.

Tavris, Carol, , The uproar over sexual abuse and its findings, in: Society, May-June 2000, 37-4
Congress and clinicians may feel a spasm of righteousness by condemning scientific findings they dislike, but their actions will do little or nothing to reduce the actual abuse of children.

Bullough, Vern, The Pedophilia Smear, in: Taking Positions, 5 June 2000
Self-appointed guardians of American morality like Laura Schlessinger are targeting sex researchers, including me. 
In June 1998, Bruce Rind, Philip Tromovitch, and Robert Bausenman published a meta-analysis of 59 studies dealing with child sexual abuse based on college samples in the Psychological Bulletin. [...]
A year earlier Rind and Tromovitch reached similar conclusions about child sexual abuse using a national probability sample. Their findings should have encouraged therapists to rethink some of their assumptions since they implied that, for a significant portion of child sexual abuse victims, the trauma was not what many believed it was, and that treatment modalities could be adjusted according to the individual himself or herself.
Instead the two studies led to a firestorm of controversy which eventually resulted in a congressional resolution condemning them. Why?

Esterie, Philippe (& Hélène Amboureux), Abus sexuel: Le rapport capital, Le rapport Bauserman analysé et commenté dans la France de l'an 2000
Pour recevoir en qualité d'un ZIP Html fichier ou bien d'un .PDF fichier-texte et 
.PDF fichier-les-notes

Dear Dr Laura
 The following is an open letter to Dr. Laura penned by a US resident, which was posted on the Internet.
Dear Dr. Laura:
Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God's Law. I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination.
End of debate.
I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some of the other specific laws and how to follow them.
1. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord - Lev. 1:9. The problem is my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them? [...]

Letter to the Editor, Aug. 2, 2000
Erica Goodes prompt response to the publication of the latest child abuse study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, (Childhood Abuse and Adult Stress, p. A22, Aug. 2nd) strikes of a continuation of scientific revisonism begun after the publication in 1998 of Rind, Bauserman and Tromovitchs Meta-Analysis of Child Sex Abuse Using College Samples in Psychological Bulletin, published by the American Psychological Association

O'Carroll, Tom, Discussion of the Rind meta-analysis with a British journalist
A JOURNALIST invited by Tom O'Carroll to read the famous Rind et al. meta-analysis published in the Psychological Bulletin wrote back with a number of criticisms of the paper and questions about it. The following are extracts from Tom's response.

Rind, Bruce; Bauserman, Robert & Tromovitch, Philip, Debunking the false allegation of "statistical abuse": a reply to Spiegel; Sexuality & Culture, 4-2, Spring 2000, 101-111
Consistent with his other attacks on our analyses, Spiegel (2000) elsewhere in this volume characterized our analyses as "statistical abuse." Despite the fact that we have already extensively considered and refuted the Leadership Council's criticisms, because of this inflammatory and unprofessional characterization, as well as Spiegel's use of related emotive phrases such as "rationalization for sleazy exploitation" and "moral outrage," we deem it important to specifically address Spiegel in this separate reply.

Spiegel, David, The price of abusing children and numbers, Sexuality & Culture 4-2, Spring 2000, 63-66
Sex with children is morally wrong as well as emotionally and physically damaging, Rind et al. notwithstanding. Clear-eyed reason and common sense do not diverge here. Statistical abuse has as many bad aftereffects as sexual abuse. We should not tolerate either.

Spiegel, David, Suffer the children: Long-term effects of sexual abuse, Society, 05/01/2000, 37 -4, 18-20
The "Psychological Bulletin" ignited a storm of controversy by publishing an article by Bruce Rind, Philip Tromovitch and Robert Bauserman that appeared to offer evidence that there are few if any lasting ill effects of child sexual and physical abuse. Spiegel suggests that the study is seriously flawed in its assumptions, methods, and conclusions.

Spiegel, David, Real effects of real child sexual abuse, 2000
I will now briefly respond to Rind, Bauserman, and Tromovitch's discussion of my critique [...]
Claiming to examine the proposition that "child sexual abuse (CSA) causes intense harm, regardless of gender, pervasively in the general population" ( 1998, p. 22), Rind et al. studied elite, high functioning samples, included mild "abuse" events, excluded those events serious enough to preclude college admission, and failed to assess the full range of possible outcomes. I leave it up to the reader to decide who is distorting, misrepresenting, and overstating.

Zuriff, G.E., Pedophilia and the culture wars, in: Public Interest, Winter 2000
The article gives a short summary of the research of the Rind et al. team. Then, it will explain why the results of this research have upset many groups in the US society, including the Congress, so that these groups will deny the results of the research. 
The author analyses the remarkable reaction of the APA, who turned 180 degrees and who published paradoxes. The author analyses the ideological combat that's going on behind the scene.

Second round of discussion: 2000 - 2001

Oellerich, Thomas D., Rind, Tromovitch, and Bauserman: Politically Incorrect - Scientifically Correct, in: Sexuality & Culture, 4(2), 67-81 (2000)
The Rind, Tromovitch, and Bauserman study of the impact of CSA among college students is politically incorrect but scientifically correct. It has a number of important implications for the research and practice communities. Among the more important is the need to stop exaggerating the negative impact of adult/nonadult sexual behavior, as suggested earlier by both Browne and Finkelhor, and Seligman. Another important implication is for conducting research that does not approach the issue of adult/nonadult sexual behavior with a political ideology as often has been the case thus far. And finally it is time to stop the common practices of 1)assuming that CSA causes psychological harm, and 2) routinely recommending psychotherapeutic intervention.

Oellerich, Thomas D., Rind, Tromovitch und Bauserman: Ihre meta-analytische Studie ist politisch "unkorrekt", doch wissenschaftlich hieb- und stichfest; Sexualität & Kultur, 4(2), 67-81 (2000)
Die Untersuchung von Rind, Tromovitch und Bauserman über die Auswirkungen sexuellen Kindsmissbrauchs auf College-Studenten ist politisch "unkorrekt", aber wissenschaftlich korrekt. Sie enthält eine Anzahl wichtiger Hinweise für Leute in der Forschung und in der Praxis. Einer der wichtigeren ist, mit der Übertreibung der negativen Auswirkungen sexueller Beziehungen zwischen Erwachsenen und Nichterwachsenen aufzuhören, was auch schon früher sowohl von Browne und Finkelhor wie auch von Seligman gefordert wurde. Ein anderer wichtiger Gesichtspunkt ist, eine Forschung zu betreiben, die das Thema der sexuellen Erwachsenen-Kind-Beziehungen nicht mit einer politischen Ideologie im Hinterkopf angeht, wie das bisher oft geschah. Und schliesslich ist es an der Zeit, Schluss zu machen mit der üblichen Praxis, 1) nach SKM einen psychischen Schaden zu erwarten und 2) routinemässig eine Psychotherapie zu verschreiben.

Rind, B., Bauserman, R. & Tromovitch, Ph., Science versus orthodoxy: Anatomy   of the congressional condemnation of a scientific article and reflections on remedies for future ideological attacks' in: Applied & Preventive Psychology 9:211-225 (2000). 
[<< External links >>]   [PDF text]     [PDF refs]
In this article, we detail the chronology behind the attacks. Then we discuss the science behind our meta-analysis, showing that the attacks were specious and that our study employed sound science, advancing the field considerably by close attention to issues of external, internal, and construct validity, as well as precision and objectivity.
Next, we discuss orthodoxies and moral panics more generally, arguing that our article was attacked as vehemently as it was because it collided with a powerful, but socially constructed orthodoxy that has evolved over the last quarter century.
Finally, we offer reflections and recommendations for fellow researchers, lest this kind of event recur. We focus on the need for greater cognizance of historical attacks on science to anticipate and deflate future attacks. We argue that our research should stand as another reminder among many that sacred-cow issues do not belong in science. We discuss nonscientific advocacy in the social sciences and the need to recognize and counter it. We discuss the failure of psychology to adequately deal with the study of human sexuality, a problem that enabled the faulty attacks on our article, and we suggest directions for becoming more scientific in this area. And last, we raise the issue of how professional organizations might deal more effectively with such attacks in the future.

Rind, B., Tromovitch, Ph. & Bauserman, R., 
Condemnation of a scientific article: A chronology and refutation of the attacks and a discussion of threats to the integrety of science,
in: In: Sexuality & Culture, 4-2, Spring 2000
[<< External links >>] 
The current article chronicles this whole affair. First, we provide background, explaining why an article such as ours was needed. Then we accurately summarize the article, given that it has been so widely misrepresented. Next we present a chronology of the events leading up to and following the condemnation. We then present and refute all the major criticisms of the article, which have included both methodological and conceptual attacks. Next we discuss the threat to science that these events portend. We conclude by discussing the need to separate moral judgments from scientific research, the conflation of which formed the basis for the distortions and condemnation. 

Mirkin, Harris, Sex, Science and Sin: The Rind Report, Sexual Politics and American Scholarship,  Manuscript submitted to Sexuality and Culture, Special Issue on Rind-Tromovitch-Bauserman
Many social scientists and psychologists disagreed with the article, but one would have expected them to fight back with other articles rather than with a call for censorship. In fact, the problem with the article wasn't that it was methodologically weak, but that it was strong. It broke the rules of sexual politics. [...]
The Rind report attacked the empirical foundation of the moral claims that were being made, and like the Kinsey Reports it was vehemently attacked and seen as undermining the moral tradition. The anger was generated against the two reports not because they were unconvincing but because they, each in their own way, were too convincing. If their analyses were right it would shake the foundations of the moral claims that were commonly made and largely accepted. To admit Rind type arguments into the debate, and to argue shades of gray and issues of definition, was to lose the major battle. The Rind argument didn't overtly challenge the moral premise about adult/youth sex, but it did threaten to change the type of argument. That was the danger.

Anderson, Walter Truett, Uproar Over Child Sex Study Still Going Strong After Two Years,  Pacific News Service, May 30, 2001
Quarrels in academia tend to stay indoors, however ferocious they may become. But a paper challenging conventional wisdom on the question of adult-child sexual relations has produced resounding noises.
[...] So we now have a whole herd of arguments -- not just about the impacts of child-adult sex experiences, but about whether the APA should have published the Rind article or then apologized for publishing it, or should have published the Lilienfeld article. 
None of these arguments has been resolved. The only concrete step so far is that Lilienfeld has reportedly resigned from the APA. And the only clear conclusion to be drawn from it is that adult-child sex is too hot a subject for academic publications.

Klein, Marty, APA Embarrasses Itself Again, in: issue #16 of the electronic newsletter 'Sexual Intelligence', June 2001
It isn't enough to learn lessons in life; you have to learn the right lessons. Having learned to not stick its hand in the oven, The American Psychological Association (APA) has now put its hand into the fireplace.

Lotfus, Elisabeth:
Memory researcher Elizabeth Loftus wins American Psychological Society award; defends the Rind team and Lilienfeld, and criticizes the American Psychological Association.
The FMS (False Memory Syndrome) Foundation Newsletter of July/August 2001, 10/4, gives the text of a speech by memory researcher Elizabeth Loftus, who helped discredit recovered memories. Loftus received an award from the American Psychological Society.
In her speech, she mentions the Rind et al controversy and Lilienfeld. Below, 

first an introduction by a newsletter editor, 

then a news flash about Loftus winning the award, 

then Loftus's acceptance speech.

Paolucci, Elisabeth; Genius, Mark & Violato, Claudio, 'Meta-analysis of published research on the effects of child sexual abuse (CSA)' ,  Journal of Psychology (2001, 135, 1, 17-36
A meta-analysis of the published research on the effects of child sexual abuse (CSA) was undertaken for 6 outcomes: posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), depression, suicide, sexual promiscuity, victim-perpetrator cycle, and poor academic performance.
Thirty-seven studies published between 1981 and 1995 involving 25,367 people were included. Many of the studies were published in 1994 (24; 65%), and most were done in the United States (22; 59%). [...]
The analyses provide clear evidence confirming the link between CSA and subsequent negative short- and long-term effects on development. [...] 
The results of the present meta-analysis support the multifaceted model of traumatization rather than a specific sexual abuse syndrome of CSA.


Peter: Comment: The Journal of Psychology (2001, 135, 1, 17-36) carries a 'Meta-analysis of published research on the effects of child sexual abuse (CSA)' by Elizabeth Paolucci, Mark Genuis and Claudio Violato, which reviews 37 good-quality studies.
These covered 9,230 people who claimed that in childhood they had experienced unwanted sexual contact from an adult in a position of relative power. 
The review has serious limitations: welcome contacts from ordinary adults were plainly excluded; advances from family members were very much included; clinical and legal samples were included, rather than using only representative population samples [...]
The authors show their size-of-effect to be about half the size-of-effect achieved on the mortality rate of representative American physicians who experimentally took aspirin. [...]

Rind at APS 
At the program "Unpopular Results: Providing Incremental Validity at the Price of Being Rejected" presented at the 2001 edition of the annual meeting of the "American Psychological Society" in Toronto, Bruce Rind discussed the treatment of the 1998 meta-analysis. Nothing new, but still noteworthy as it shows that RBT continue to get a fair hearing in a number of scientific forums. 

Rind, B., Bauserman, R. & Tromovitch, Ph., The Condemned Meta-Analysis on Child Sexual Abuse; Good Science and Long-Overdue Skepticism; In: Skeptical Inquirer July/August 2001, 68-72   PDF file [External link to PDF file]
In July 1999, the prestigious journal Psychological Bulletin published our review of fifty-nine studies that had examined psychological correlates of child sexual abuse (CSA) [...] We soon achieved an unexpected honor: our paper was unanimously condemned by Congress.
In the aftermath, SKEPTICAL INQUIRER has published two commentaries, one denouncing Congress [...] and the other denouncing our study (Hagen 2001). We would like to offer our own thoughts about this astonishing story of politics, pressure, and social hysteria - the antitheses of critical and skeptical thought.
We conducted our research in the spirit of scientific skepticism, an attitude sadly missing in the CSA panic that arose throughout much of the 1980s and early 1990s.

Rind, B., Bauserman, R. & Tromovitch, Ph., Meta-Analyse des sexuellen Mißbrauchs; Sie wurde verurteilt, doch war sie gute Forschung und brachte lang-überfällige Skepsis; Aus: Skeptical Inquirer, Juli/August 2001, 68-72     [PDF File] 
Im Juli 1998 veröffentlichte die angesehene Zeitschrift Psychological Bulletin einen Übersichtartikel, dem bald die ungewöhnliche Ehre zuteil wurde, vom Kongreß der Vereinigten Staaten einstimmig verurteilt zu werden. In dieser Arbeit hatten wir die Ergebnisse aus 59 Originalarbeiten zusammengefaßt, in denen die psychologischen Auswirkungen des sexuellen Kindesmißbrauchs (child sexual abuse - im folgenden kurz Mißbrauchuntersucht worden waren. In der Folge veröffentlichte der Skeptical Inquirer zwei Kommentare, von denen sich einer  gegen den Kongreß, der andere gegen unsere Untersuchung stellte. Wir möchten hier aus unserer Sicht die Geschichte dieser erstaunlichen Mischung aus Politik, Macht und Hysterie erzählen, welche doch sicher alle zu den Antithesen kritischen und skeptischen Denkens gehören.

Ruark, Jennifer K, Journal Backs Away From Article Critical of Congress and Psychology Association, in: The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 23, 2001
The editor of American Psychologist, a leading psychology journal, has reneged on an agreement to publish an article critical of the journal's sponsor and of several members of Congress.

'Dr. Laura' debacle won't go away as vetoed article dispute reveals, From "The National Psychologist: The Web Site of The Independent Newspaper for Practitioners", vol. 10, no. 4, July/August 2001,
[...] Lilienfeld went public after learning that his article, which had once been accepted for publication in the American Psychologist, had been rejected. His actions elicited an indignant outcry from the academic-scientific community, erupting in an explosion of internet e-mail messages.
Ultimately, the issues centered on academic freedom vs. government interference [...]

Chris, Rind, Bauserman and Tromovitch won’t cave in, The adamantine defense of a condemned study, Koinos magazine 32 – 2001/4. 
The field of research into what is called ‘child sexual abuse’ has been rocked by renewed rigorous objective inquiry into, and razor-sharp analyses of, the current and recent historical state of affairs.

Chris, Rind, Bauserman und Tromovitch weigern sich nachzugeben, Die schlagkräftige Verteidigung einer abgelehnten StudieKoinos magazine 32 – 2001/4.
Der Forschungsbereich, der sich mit dem so genannten ‘sexuellen Kindesmissbrauch’ befasst, ist durch eine erneute gründlich-objektive Untersuchung und scharfsinnige Analyse der Sachlage von heute und der jüngsten Vergangenheit erschüttert worden.

Chris, The Netherlands, Dr. Margaret Hagen's critique of RBT, summarized and commented on.
The Skeptical Inquiry of January 2001 has a critique by psychologist Margaret Hagen of the Rind et al. 1998 meta-analysis. Her article is not on the Web, but she was so kind to email it to me. While Hagen is far from an unreasonable hysteric, she berates Rind et al. for pushing an agenda in their report, as she sees it. Hagen also says the report is weak not because it messes with figures, but because it draws overly confident conclusions from the figures. Below I encapsulate her article and provide some commentary.

Desire, Re-analyzing Rind 
In the famous meta-analysis of Rind et al. [RTB98], one of the aspects that is studied are the recalled immediate reactions to child sexual abuse experiences - were they (at the time) seen as positive, negative or neutral by the younger partner? 
The results from a number of studies is given, and a weighted average is found of 11% positive, 18% neutral, 72% negative for girls and 37% positive, 29% neutral, 33% negative for boys. 
However, the data from the various studies differ widely - positive reactions vary from 2% to 28% for girls and 8% to 69% for boys, negative from 52% to 84% for girls and from 7% to 54% for boys.
I have looked at the various definitions used for CSA, to see whether this
might explain the large differences between studies for these data. The
definitions differed in various ways: [...]

O'Carroll, Tom, The Coxell reference
I have just come across an old request posted by Desire for information about a paper by Coxell and colleagues that had been mentioned by RBT in a public defense of their work.
The full Coxell paper is available free from the website of the British Medical Journal, which published the print version. The page is at:
The paper's findings are certainly worth citing, despite the fact that the authors were plainly more interested in non-consensual sex than consensual. 
For reference, here is what Rind et al said about the paper:

Third round of discussion: mid-2001 - 2002

American Psychologist March 2002, Volume 57, Number 3, Abstracts
[Special issue about the Rind et al. discussion]

Dallam, S. J. (2002). Science or Propaganda? An examination of Rind, Tromovitch and Bauserman (1998). Journal of Child Sexual Abuse, 9(3/4), 109-134.
(Simultaneously published as a chapter in Misinformation Concerning Child Sexual Abuse and Adult Survivors (Charles L. Whitfield, MD, FASAM; Joyanna Silberg, PhD; and Paul Jay Fink, MD, Eds.) Haworth Press, 2002)  
"The purpose of the present article is to examine whether Rind et al. (1998) is best characterized as unpopular science or pedophile propaganda." [...]
" [...]  the authors’ views on sex between adults and children have more in common with the ideology of advocates of “intergenerational” sexual relationships, than the reasoned opinions of most other scientists who have studied this issue." [...]
"After a careful examination of the evidence, it is concluded that Rind et al. can best be described as an advocacy article that inappropriately uses science in an attempt to legitimize its findings."

A reaction: 
Rivas, Titus, Propaganda about science 
[...] I have personally been mentioned in the context of one or more articles that aim against a study by Rind, Tromovitch and Bauserman. [...] as one of several Dutch authors who want to promote "pseudoscience" in the cause of 'pedophilia'. 

Dallam, S.J., Gleaves, D.H., Cepeda-Benito, A., Silberg, J.L., Kraemer, H.C. & Spiegel, D.,
The Effects of Child Sexual Abuse: Comment on Rind, Tromovitch, and Bauserman (1998);
Psychologican Bulletin, 127, 6, 715-733, 2001
The current analysis revealed numerous problems in that study that minimized CSA-adjustment relations, including

use of a healthy sample,

an inclusive definition of CSA,

failure to correct for statistical attenuation, and

misreporting of original data.

Rind et al.'s study's main conclusions were not supported by the original data. As such, attempts to use their study to argue that an individual has not been harmed by sexual abuse constitute a serious misapplication of its findings.

O'Keefe, Mark, Some in mainstream contend certain cases of adult-minor sex should be acceptable, Newhouse News Service, Star Tribune [Minneapolis, Minnesota], March 26, 2002
Sex between adults and children has been a societal taboo so strong that it's considered one of our few unquestioned moral principles. But arguments have emerged in academic journals, books and online that at least some such sex should be acceptable, especially when children consent to it.
Those making the case aren't just fringe groups, such as the North American Man-Boy Love Association, but a handful of academics at mainstream universities.

Ondersma, S.J., Chaffin, M., Berliner, L., Cordon, I., Goodman, G.S. & Barnett, D.,
Sex With Children Is Abuse: Comment on Rind, Tromovitch, and Bauserman (1998);
Psychologican Bulletin, 127, 6, 707-714, 2001
[...] Several aspects of their work have proven to be highly controversial, including their assertion that the relation between child sexual abuse and adjustment is quite small and their questioning of whether child sexual abuse should be labeled abuse in scientific inquiry. In this commentary, the authors summarize the controversy that has ensued, place it in a historical context, discuss the limitations of B. Rind et al.'s findings, and critique the manner in which those findings are presented. The authors also argue for the appropriateness of the term abuse and for scientific terminology that reflects rather than contradicts consensual public morality.

Rind, B., Tromovitch, Ph., & Bauserman, R., 
The Validity and Appropriateness of Methods, Analyses, and Conclusions in Rind et al. (1998): A Rebuttal of Victimological Critique From Ondersma et al. (2001) and Dallam et al. (2001);
Psychologican Bulletin, 127, 6, 734-758, 2001 
The authors respond to 2 victimological critiques of their 1998 meta-analysis on child sexual abuse (CSA). S. J. Dallam et al. (2001) claimed that B. Rind, P. Tromovitch, and R. Bauserman (1998) committed numerous methodological and statistical errors, and often miscoded and misinterpreted data.
The authors show all these claims to be invalid. To the contrary, they demonstrate frequent bias in Dallam et al.'s criticisms. S. J. Ondersma et al. (2001) claimed that Rind et al.'s study is part of a backlash against psychotherapists, that its suggestions regarding CSA definitions were extra-scientific, and that the moral standard is needed to understand CSA scientifically. The authors show their suggestions to have been scientific and argue that it is Ondersma et al.'s issue-framing and moral standard that are extra-scientific. This reply supports the original methods, analyses, recommendations, and conclusions of Rind et al.

Schulte-Stracke, Peter, Streit um sexuellen Missbrauch; Einige Anmerkungen zum Zürcher Tagesanzeiger vom 16.2.2002 
Die Meta-Analyse des »sexuellen Mißbrauchs« durch Bruce RIND, Philip TROMOVITCH und - last but not least - Robert BAUSERMAN hat Furore gemacht. Nunmehr hat der Zürcher Tagesanzeiger die Veröffentlichung zweier Kritiken und der Replik der Autoren im Novemberheft der Zeitschrift Psychological Bulletin zum Anlaß eines Beitrages von Jochen Paulus genommen. Einige Punkte darin sind zu ergänzen oder zu korrigieren.

Tuller, David, Sex between teenage boys and older men is not always coercive -- and it can be more ecstatic than traumatic; Minor report; Salon.Com July 22, 2002 
[....] it doesn't take a huge stretch of the imagination -- at least not of my imagination, nor, as it turns out, the imaginations of other gay men of my acquaintance -- to believe that there are some men whose lives were not destroyed, or may even have been enhanced, by adolescent sex with a priest. They have not gone public, nor would I expect them to, especially in the current environment. But that they exist -- somewhere -- I have little doubt.


Ulrich, Heather; Randolph Mickey & Acheson, Shawn
Child sexual abuse - A replication of the meta-analytic examination of child sexual abuse by Rind, Tromovitch, and Bauserman (1998)

The Scientific review of Mental Health Practice 4-2, pp 37-51, Fall/winter 2005-2006
Full text 
Abstract & Quotes 
Quote: "Child sexual abuse does not necessarily lead to long-term harm."

Some documents

The Congress Resolution 107, July 12, 1999

APA's Statement
Statement dated March 23, 1999 by the American Psychological Association:
"Childhood Sexual Abuse Causes Serious Harm to its Victims"

The Author's Response, May 12, 1999

Fowler's Statement
Controversy Regarding APA Journal Article, From: Ray Fowler, Ph.D., 25 May 1999

The other APA's Statement
America Psychiatric Association medical director criticizes other APA's publication of pedophilia study, June 1, 1999 

Hatfield, Dr. Elaine & others, Letter to APA; 3 July 1999 
We, the president and past-presidents of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sex, members of the SSSS Executive Committee, and editors of Journal of Sex Research and the Archives of Human Sexuality would like to urge the American Psychological Association to take a strong stand in support of Dr. Bruce Rind [... ... ...]

Tiefer, Leonore, PhD., Outraged; Letter to APA; July 15, 1999 
Your response to the Congressional and conservative organizations' furor, as presented in The New York Times, seems to me to have been exactly the opposite of what was needed. You should have taken the opportunity to rush to the Hill to explain to Congress how peer review works [...] to explain to Congress how meta-analysis is an excellent new tool [...], to explain to Congress that political interference with scientific processes is exactly what won't help children and won't help society understand complex and controversial issues, and to offer workshops on child sexuality and meta-analytic techniques to assist Congress in the future.

Weldon, Dave; Protect The Children, Jul 29 1999
Speech In The House Of Representatives, Thursday, July 29, 1999, condemning the Rind c.s. research reports.

Top scientific body finds no reason to fault Rind report, November 17th 1999

Laura Schlessinger, Evil among us

The NARTH's web page:
The Problem of Pedophilia; Adult-Child Sex Is Not Necessarily "Abuse," Say Some Psychologists

NAMBLA's statement: The Good news About Man/Boy Love


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