“Breaking Their Will is a powerful and deeply disturbing book, wide ranging in its exploration of religiously based physical and mental abuse of children past and present, and richly informed by both personal and scholarly reflections and insights. This book will have a profound impact upon the consciences and actions of readers from a wide range of religious perspectives who surely will be convinced, after finishing this book, that children deserve to be free from all forms of physical violence in the guise of discipline and the other forms of physical and mental abuse explored in Heimlich’s book.”
—Philip Greven, author of Spare the Child: The Religious Roots of Punishment
and the Psychological Impact of Physical Abuse
"Insightful, provocative, exposing, and well written, Janet Heimlich casts a bright light on the presence of child abuse in institutional religion, forcing it out of the dark corners of denial and into the arena of honesty and reality. I hope it is widely read."
—Bishop John Shelby Spong, author of The Sins of Scripture:
Exposing the Bible's Texts of Hate to Reveal the God of Love
“Child mistreatment, backed by religious tenets, is one of the most disturbing realities, especially when religions also have a unique capacity to cherish and protect children. With courage, compassion, and adept use of interviews and research on a wide range of violations, Janet Heimlich grapples with causes and constructive solutions. This is a book that all of us, but especially religious believers among us, should read as a first step to providing children the love and security they deserve. In my own teaching and research, I’ve looked for a book that focuses explicitly on how religion becomes entangled in harming children and am glad at last to have a book to recommend.”
—Bonnie J. Miller-McLemore, author of Let the Children Come:
Reimagining Childhood from a Christian Perspective
"Breaking Their Will is both heartbreaking and motivating. After rightly noting that religion is most often not harmful to children, Janet Heimlich details the unique ability of religion in its worst manifestations to inflict lasting pain, humiliation, and terror on the most vulnerable members of our society. Perhaps the crowning achievement of the book is its call to action—a chapter devoted to specific ways in which officials, lawmakers, parents, and even faith communities can root out religious child abuse and remove its claims of immunity from challenge."
—Dale McGowan, author/editor of Parenting Beyond Belief
and Raising Freethinkers
"A searing indictment of those who use religion to justify a variety of forms of child abuse. In story after heartbreaking story, Heimlich details the shocking behavior perpetrated on children by the very people they are taught to respect and trust. Supported by prodigious research, case studies, court records and many interviews with victims as well as perpetrators, Breaking Their Will deserves to be widely read. Heimlich reveals an aspect of our society that many deny exists and offers positive suggestions for change."
—Carol Delaney, author of Abraham on Trial: The Social Legacy of Biblical Myth
For more on Breaking Their Will view the book trailer
and visit the website: religiouschildmaltreatment.com
Shipping Weight: 1lbs
As a freelance reporter for National Public Radio, Janet Heimlich won nine journalism awards, including the prestigious Katie, given by the Press Club of Dallas; the Houston Press Club's Radio Journalist of the Year; and the Texas Bar Association's Gavel Award. In addition to her radio work, Ms. Heimlich has written nonfiction articles for such publications as Texas Monthly, the Austin American-Statesman, the Texas Observer, Tribeza, and Edible Austin. Her book Breaking Their Will: Shedding Light on Religious Child Maltreatment is the first to take an in-depth look at child abuse and neglect caused by religious belief.