"In this book [Miller's] thesis is that childhood abuse, even when the parents don't know that they are being abusive, is held in the body and damages health and life expectancy as children grow up." Victoria Neumark, The Times Education Supplement"
World-renowned psychoanalyst, Alice Miller has devoted a lifetime to studying how the cruelties inflicted on children cripple them as adults. In this new work, Miller goes further, investigating the long-range consequences of childhood abuse on the body - be it cancer, stroke or other debilitating illnesses. Using the experiences of her patients along with biographical stories of literary giants such as Virginia Woolf, Franz Kafka and Marcel Proust, Miller shows how a child's humiliation, impotence and bottled rage will manifest itself as adult illness. Never one to shy away from controversy, Miller urges society as a whole to jettison its belief in the Fourth Commandment and not to extend forgiveness to parents whose tyrannical child-rearing methods have resulted in unhappy, and often ruined, adult lives. This empowering book will enable readers to come to terms with their repressed emotions and break the cycle of violence.