Sunday 24 May 2015

Radio: Ritual Sexual Abuse: The Anatomy of a Panic

Tomorrow evening, BBC Radio 4 is broadcasting the first part of a series about changing attitudes to sexual abuse. The title is Ritual Sexual Abuse: The Anatomy of a Panic. The description on the BBC website says:
David Aaronovitch of The Times traces the powerful intellectual influences behind what he sees as one of the most important cultural shifts of the past 40 years: from a society in which accusations of sexual abuse were wrongly ignored to one in which the falsely accused were crushed by a system where the mantra was "victims must be believed".

In the first of two programmes, Aaronovitch will examine the role played by unproven psychoanalytic theories which, from the 1980s, spread from the world of therapists in Canada and the USA to social work, medicine and then to law enforcement in Britain.

From the NSPCC to academia it was believed that children were being sexually abused in group Satanic rituals, which involved murder and animal sacrifice. The programme will explore how these bizarre ideas took hold, how they were related to mistaken psychotherapeutic practices, and how they resonate still.
Ritual Sexual Abuse: The Anatomy of a Panic, pt 1, is on at 8.30pm, on 25 May 2015 and is repeated at 9.30pm, on 31 May. You can find out more details here:

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