Children at risk: a historical perspective of the concept

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The recognition of the need for special protection for children took centuries to build in European societies. This process took place unevenly and at different rates in place and time and among social groups. A vast body of scientific literature has now been developed since Ariès (1960) launched the debate on this issue (King, 2007). The evolved perceptions of the child at risk and the responses that these made possible also changed over time (Lopes, 2002). The present chapter aims to contribute a historical perspective of this process in Portugal, focusing on the evolution of the concept of children at risk and the conceptualized objectives of the institutional responses which offered protection to these children in the period between 1867 and 1978, that is, during the evolution period of the current children and youth protection system.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChildren at Risk
Subtitle of host publicationA Multifaceted View
EditorsAurízia Anica, Sofia Freire-Raposo
Place of PublicationFaro
Publisher Soroptimist Internacional Clube de Tavira/ Universidade do Algarve
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)978-989-8859-09-9
Publication statusPublished - 2017


  • History of the child at risk


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