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Annotated bibliography

Read more about causal theories. Clicking on the title will take you to more details from the article or book.

Feierman, J., "Introduction and A Biosocial Overview," in Feierman, J. (ed.), Pedophilia: Biosocial Dimensions, New York: Springer-Verlag, 1990, pp. 1-68.

Jay Feierman describes evidence for hormonal processes that influence sexual attraction before birth. He proposes a theory that explains heterosexuality, homosexuality, ephebophilia, and pedophilia based on the phenomena of brain masculinization and defeminization.

Freund, K. & Kuban, M., "Toward a testable developmental model of pedophilia: The development of erotic age preference," Child Abuse & Neglect, vol. 17, 1993, pp. 315-324.

Kurt Freund and Michael Kuban of the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry in Toronto propose and test a theory of gender and age preference. They write that their findings along with their clinical observations suggest that the development of erotic gender preference precedes that of erotic age preference. They conclude that pedophilia is predetermined at least from early childhood.

Garland, R.J. & Dougher, M.J., "The abused/abuser hypothesis of child sexual abuse: A critical review of theory and research," in Feierman, J. (ed.), Pedophilia: Biosocial Dimensions, New York: Springer-Verlag, 1990, pp. 488-509.

Psychologists Randall J. Garland and Michael J. Dougher of the University of New Mexico summarize the various theories that have been proposed in attempts to support the abused/abuser hypothesis, and examine the scientific evidence. They find it wanting, and propose examining additional factors to understand the effects of adult-minor sexual activity on the child or adolescent, including the characteristics of the child or adolescent and the nature of the interaction.

Hall, G.C.N., Theory-based assessment, treatment, and prevention of sexual aggression, New York: Oxford University Press, 1996.

Considering sexual attraction to minors to be a form of sexual aggression, Gordon C.N. Hall outlines the various theories that attempt to explain sexual aggression in general. He proposes that while all have their shortcomings, each type of theory has validity because it describes a different type of aggressor. He writes that sexual aggressors against children rarely use violence or aggression in their offenses, and should be classified as physiologically motivated.

Howells, K., "Adult sexual interest in children: Considerations relevant to theories of aetiology," In Cook, M. & Howells, K. (eds.), Adult sexual interest in children, London: Academic Press, 1981, pp. 55-94.

Kevin Howells explains psychoanalytic and social learning theories which attempt to explain the causes of pedophilia. He also describes the evidence that supports them, and points out shortcomings of research in the area.

Langevin, R., Sexual strands: Understanding and treating sexual anomalies in men, Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum, 1983.

Ron Langevin of the Clarke Institute of Psychiatry in Toronto briefly describes various theories attempting to explain pedophilia, the research that supports them, and treatment methods.

Li, C.K., "Adult sexual experiences with children," in Li, C.K., West, D.J., & Woodhouse, T.P., Children’s sexual encounters with adults, London: Duckworth, pp. 139-316, 1990.

Psychologist Chin-Keung Li critically reviews the major theories that attempt to explain adult-child sexual interaction, and finds a fundamental problem that limits all of them.

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