Harvard Square Library exists solely on the basis of donations. If you have benefitted from any of our materials, and/or if making Unitarian Universalist intellectual heritage materials widely available and free is a value to you, please donate whatever you call--even a small amount here: Donate
Dr. Eli Newberger, a teacher at Harvard Medical School and founder of the Child Protection Team and Family Development Program at Children’s Hospital in Boston, summarizes the biological and psychological factors driving behavioral choices in boys and girls. He demonstrates that the gender nature of violence reflects patterns of brain response and behavioral tendencies scripted over generations of adaptation and that maltreatment alters responses and distorts tendencies. Assuring that cognitive capacities and social requirements enable humans to make choices, Dr. Newberger asserts that character manifests itself at the moral nexus where impulses and desires must be reconciled with the needs and rights of others. He uses interview content to illustrate his analysis and concludes with recommendations for ways to strengthen children’s character in the face of maltreatment.