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Cinderella effect
In evolutionary psychology, the Cinderella effect is the phenomenon of higher incidences of
different forms of child abuse and mistreatment by stepparents than by biological parents. It takes its
name from the fairy tale character Cinderella, which is about a girl who is mistreated by her
stepsisters and stepmother. Evolutionary psychologists describe the effect as a byproduct of a bias
towards kin, and a conflict between reproductive partners of investing in young that are unrelated to
one partner. There is both supporting evidence for this theory and criticism against it.

Contents
Background
Evolutionary psychology theory
Daly and Wilson research
Explanation
Methods
Attachment theory
Misunderstandings
Supportive evidence
Criticism
David Buller
Temrin et al. Sweden study
Alternative hypotheses
Ethical issues
See also
Notes
References
Ulteriori letture

Sfondo
All'inizio degli anni '70, sorse una teoria sulla connessione tra i patrigno e i maltrattamenti sui
bambini. Nel 1973, lo psichiatra forense P. D. Scott riassumo le informazioni su un campione di "casi
fatali di bambini maltrattati" perpetrati con rabbia ... 15 dei 29 killer - il 52% - erano patrigno.
[1] Sebbene inizialmente non ci fosse alcuna analisi di questi dati grezzi, da allora sono state raccolte
prove empiriche su quello che ora viene chiamato effetto Cenerentola attraverso documenti ufficiali,
rapporti e censimenti.

Da oltre 30 anni vengono raccolti dati relativi alla validità dell'effetto Cenerentola, con una ricchezza
di prove che indicano un rapporto diretto tra step-relationship e abuso. Questa prova di abusi sui
minori e omicidi proviene da una varietà di fonti tra cui rapporti ufficiali di abusi su minori, dati
clinici, rapporti sulle vittime e dati ufficiali sull'omicidio. [2] Gli studi hanno concluso che "i figliastri in
Canada, Gran Bretagnae Stati Uniti incorrono effettivamente in un rischio molto elevato di
maltrattamenti su minori di vario tipo, in particolare percosse letali". [3]

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Prove potenti a sostegno dell'effetto Cenerentola provengono dalla scoperta che quando i genitori
abusivi hanno sia figli di passo che genetici, generalmente risparmiano i loro figli genetici. In tali
famiglie, i figliastri sono stati presi di mira esclusivamente 9 volte su 10 in uno studio e in 19 su 22 in
un altro. Oltre a mostrare tassi più elevati di comportamenti negativi (ad esempio, abusi) nei confronti
dei figliastri, i patrigna mostrano meno comportamenti positivi nei confronti dei figliastri rispetto ai
genitori genetici. Ad esempio, in media, i patrignanti investono meno nell'istruzione, giocano meno
con i figliastri, prendono meno i figliastri dal medico,ecc. [5] Questa discriminazione contro i figliastri è
insolita rispetto alle statistiche sugli abusi che coinvolgono la popolazione complessiva, dati "i
seguenti fatti aggiuntivi: (1) quando vengono rilevati abusi sui minori, si trova spesso che tutti i
bambini in casa sono stati vittime; e (2) i figliastri sono quasi sempre i figli più grandi della casa,
mentre il generale ... tendenza nelle famiglie di genitorialità uniforme è per i più giovani di essere
vittime più frequenti. [3]

Teoria della psicologia


Gli psicologi evoluzionismi Martin Daly e Margo Wilson propongono che l'effetto Cenerentola sia una
conseguenza diretta della moderna teoria evolutiva del fitness inclusivo,in particolare la teoria degli
investimenti parentali. Sostengono che l'allevamento umano dei bambini è così prolungato e costoso
che "è improbabile che una psicologia parentale modellata dalla selezione naturale sia
indiscriminata". [6] Secondo loro, "la ricerca sul comportamento sociale animale fornisce una logica per
aspettarsi che i genitori siano discriminanti nella loro cura e affetto e, più specificamente, per
discriminare a favore dei propri giovani". [7] La teoria del fitness inclusivo propone un criterio
selettivo per l'evoluzione dei tratti sociali, in cui il comportamento sociale che è costoso per un
singolo organismo può tuttavia emergere quando c'è una probabilità statistica che benefici
significativi di quel comportamento sociale vadano a (la sopravvivenza e la riproduzione di) altri
organismi che portano anche il tratto sociale (più direttamente, maturano a parenti genetici stretti).
In tali condizioni, può risultare un aumento netto complessivo della riproduzione del tratto sociale
nelle generazioni future.

La presentazione iniziale della teoria del fitness inclusivo (a metà degli anni '60) si concentrò sul
sostenere matematicamente la possibilità di evoluzione sociale, ma speculò anche su possibili
meccanismi in base ai quali un tratto sociale poteva effettivamente raggiungere questa necessaria
correlazione statistica tra i suoi probabili portatori. Sono state prese in considerazione due
possibilità: una che un tratto sociale possa funzionare in modo affidabile direttamente attraverso il
contesto sociale in specie in cui i parenti genetici sono solitamente concentrati in una zona di origine
locale in cui sono nati ('popolazioni viscose'); L'altro, potrebbero emergere meccanismi di
rilevamento genetico ('supergeni') che vanno oltre le correlazioni statistiche e rilevano in modo
affidabile l'effettiva parentela genetica tra gli attori sociali utilizzando il "riconoscimento dei parenti"
diretto. Il posto relativo di questi due ampi tipi di meccanismi sociali è stato discusso (vedi selezione
dei parenti e riconoscimento dei parenti), ma molti biologi considerano il "riconoscimento dei
parenti" un importante meccanismo possibile. Martin Daly e Margo Wilson seguono questo secondo
meccanismo e si aspettano che i genitori "discriminino a favore dei propri piccoli", cioè dei loro veri
parenti genetici.

Ricerca di Daly e Wilson

I dati più abbondanti sui maltrattamenti della stepchild sono stati raccolti e interpretati dagli
psicologi Martin Daly e Margo Wilson, che studiano con enfasi in Neuroscienze e Comportamento
alla McMaster University. La loro prima misura della validità dell'effetto Cenerentola si basava sui
dati dell'American Humane Association (AHA), un archivio di rapporti sugli abusi sui minori negli
Stati Uniti che deteneva oltre ventimila segnalazioni. [8] Questi documenti portarono Wilson e Daly a
concludere che "un bambino di età inferiore ai tre anni che viveva con un genitore genetico e un
patrigna negli Stati Uniti nel 1976 aveva circa sette volte più probabilità di diventare un caso
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convalidato di abusi sui minori nei registri rispetto a uno che abitava con due genitori genetici". [9] I
loro risultati complessivi dimostrano che i bambini residenti con i patrigna hanno un rischio più
elevato di abusi anche quando vengono presi in considerazione altri fattori. [6]

Spiegazione

Tutti gli organismi devono affrontare trade-off su come investire il loro tempo, energia, rischio e altre
risorse, quindi gli investimenti in un dominio (ad esempio, l'investimento dei genitori) generalmente
toglino dalla loro capacità di investire in altri settori (ad esempio sforzo di accoppiamento,crescita o
investimento in altri figli). [10] L'investimento in bambini non genetici riduce quindi la capacità di un
individuo di investire in se stesso o nei suoi figli genetici, senza portare direttamente benefici
riproduttivi. Quindi, dal punto di vista della biologia evolutiva, non ci si aspetterebbe che gli
organismi si prendevano cura regolarmente e deliberatamente della prole non correlata.

Daly e Wilson vengono sottolineati che l'infanticidio è una forma estrema di investimento parentale
di parte che è ampiamente praticato nel mondo animale. Ad esempio, quando un leone maschio
immigrato entra in un orgoglio, non è raro che uccida i cuccioli paterni di altri maschi. Poiché l'orgoglio
può fornire supporto solo per un numero limitato di cuccioli per sopravvivere fino all'età adulta,
l'uccisione dei cuccioli in competizione con la prole potenziale del nuovo maschio aumenta le
possibilità che la sua progenie sopravviva alla maturità. Inoltre, l'atto di infanticidio accelera il ritorno
alla ricettività sessuale nelle femmine, permettendo al maschio di padre la propria prole in modo più
tempestivo. [13] Queste osservazioni indicano che nel mondo animale, i maschi impiegano determinate
misure per garantire che gli investimenti dei genitori siano orientati specificamente verso la propria
prole. [11]

A differenza del leone, tuttavia, gli esseri umani in una situazione di stepparenting affrontano un
compromesso più complicato poiché non possono rinnegare completamente la prole del loro partner
da una relazione precedente, in quanto rischierebbero di perdere l'accesso sessuale al loro partner e
qualsiasi possibilità di produrre potenziale prole. Così, secondo Daly e Wilson, l'investimento
patrinale può essere visto come uno sforzo di accoppiamento per garantire la possibilità di una futura
riproduzione con il genitore della loro figliastra. Questa ipotesi di sforzo di accoppiamento suggerisce che
gli esseri umani tenderanno a investire di più nella loro prole genetica e investiranno abbastanza nei
loro figliastri. È da questo quadro teorico che Daly e Wilson sostengono che i casi di abuso di minori
verso la prole non biologica dovrebbero essere più frequenti che verso la prole biologica. [14]

Ci si aspetterebbe quindi una maggiore reattività dei genitori verso la propria prole piuttosto che
verso i figli non correlati, e ciò si tradurrà in risultati più positivi e meno esiti negativi nei confronti
dei propri figli rispetto ad altri figli in cui ci si aspetta che si investa (cioè stepchildren). "Se l'abuso di
minori è una risposta comportamentale influenzata dalla selezione naturale, è più probabile che si
verifichi quando ci sono minori guadagni di fitness inclusivi a causa di una scarsa o incertezza".
A causa di questi adattamenti dalla selezione naturale, è più probabile che gli abusi sui minori siano
commessi dai patrigno rispetto ai genitori genetici: entrambi dovrebbero investire pesantemente nei
bambini, ma i genitori genetici avranno un maggiore amore parentale specifico per i bambini che
promuove la cura positiva e inibisce i maltrattamenti.

Daly e Wilson riferiscono che questo amore dei genitori può spiegare perché la prole genetica è più
immune alle frustate dai genitori. [16] Affermano che "l'amore parentale specifico per i bambini è il
meccanismo emotivo che consente alle persone di tollerare , anche di gioire, quei lunghi anni di
costosi investimenti parentali non reciproci". [16] Indicano uno studio che confronta le famiglie naturali
di padre e patrigno come sostegno all'idea che i patrigno non visualizzano i loro figliastri come i loro
figli biologici e, allo stesso modo, i bambini non visualizzano i loro patrigno come i loro genitori
biologici. [17]Questo studio, basato su una serie di questionari che sono stati poi sottoposti ad analisi

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statistiche, riferisce che i bambini hanno meno probabilità di andare dai loro patrigno per
l'orientamento e che i patrigno valutano i loro figliastri meno positivamente rispetto ai padri naturali.
[18]

Daly and Wilson's reports on the overrepresentation of stepparents in child homicide and abuse
statistics support the evolutionary principle of maximizing one's inclusive fitness, formalized under
Hamilton's Rule, which helps to explain why humans will preferentially invest in close kin.[6][19][20]
Adoption statistics also substantiate this principle, in that non-kin adoptions represent a minority of
worldwide adoptions.[11] Research into the high adoption rates of Oceania shows that childlessness is
the most common reason for adopting, and that in the eleven populations for which data was
available, a large majority of adoptions involved a relative with a coefficient of relatedness greater
than or equal to 0.125 (e.g., genetic cousins).[21] It is also observed that parents with both biological
and adopted children bias the partitioning of their estates in favor of the biological children,
demonstrating again that parental behavior corresponds to the principles of kin selection.[21]

Methods

In their 1985 Canadian sample, Daly and Wilson classify the frequencies of different living
arrangements (two natural parents, one natural parent, one natural parent with one stepparent, or
other) according to child age. This was accomplished by administering a randomized telephone
survey.[6]

Records of child abuse from children's aid organizations as well as police reports on runaways and
juvenile offenders were then used to determine whether children from stepparental living situations
were overrepresented as abuse victims when compared to the demographic data gathered from the
telephone survey data. The results indicate that the only living situation that has a significant
correlation to increased child abuse is one natural parent and one stepparent in the same household.
While rates of running away and crime were comparable for children living with stepparents and
children of single-parents, abuse rates for children living with stepparents were much higher.[6]

Daly and Wilson examined several potentially confounding variables in their research, including
socioeconomic status, family size, and maternal age at childbirth, however only minor differences
between natural-parent and stepparent families with respect to these factors were found, indicating
that none of these are major contributing factors to the observed Cinderella effect.[6]

Attachment theory

Evolutionary psychologists have also suggested that one of the causes of stepchild abuse may be the
lack of a parental attachment bond that the mother would normally form with her own child. An
attachment bond will, in general, be more secure if formed before the age of two, and adoption can
often disrupt the development of this bond. An infant who is fed by the primary parental figure,
usually the mother, and has the mother present during severely physically painful events will have
form a stronger parental attachment bond, and either a consistent omission of the mother from this
process or an alteration between two people (the original mother and the adoptive mother) can cause
either an insecure attachment or disorganized attachment from the parent to the child. As a result, it
is highly recommended by most psychologists that the adoptive mother be present very early in the
infant's life, preferably immediately after its birth, in order to avoid attachment disruptions and
attachment disorders.[22] This theory cannot be a whole explanation for the Cinderella effect, as
psychological research has shown that secure attachment bonds can be developed between a parent
and adopted child, and the quality of the relationship between parent and child will more often
depend on the child's pre-adoption experiences, such as length of time in social care and previous
trauma, more than characteristics of the parents.[23]

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Misunderstandings

It is sometimes argued that this evolutionary psychological account does not explain why the majority
of stepparents do not abuse their partners' children, or why a significant minority of genetic parents
do abuse their own offspring. However, their argument is based on a misunderstanding: the
evolutionary psychological account is that (all else equal) parents will love their own children more
than other people's children – it does not argue that stepparents will "want" to abuse their partner's
children, or that genetic parenthood is absolute proof against abuse. Under this account, stepparental
care is seen as "mating effort" towards the genetic parent, such that most interactions between
stepparent and stepchildren will be generally positive or at least neutral, just usually not as positive
as interactions between the genetic parent and the child would be.[24]

Supportive evidence
Strong support for the Cinderella effect as described by Daly and Wilson comes from a study of
unintentional childhood fatal injuries in Australia.[25] Tooley et al. follow the argument of Daly and
Wilson to extend the Cinderella effect from cases of abuse to incidences of unintentional fatalities.
Children are not only vulnerable to abuse by their parents, but they are also dependent on their
parents for supervision and protection from a variety of other harms.[25][26] Given that parental
supervision is fundamentally correlated to incidences of unintentional childhood injury as shown by
Wadsworth et al. and Peterson & Stern, Tooley et al. posit that selective pressures would favor an
inclination towards parental vigilance against threats to offspring well-being.[25][26][27] Tooley et al.
further argue that parental vigilance is not as highly engaged in stepparents as genetic parents,
therefore placing stepchildren at greater risk for unintentional injury.[25]

Based on data gathered from the Australia National Coroners' Information System, stepchildren
under five years of age are two to fifteen times more likely to experience an unintentional fatal injury,
especially drowning, than genetic children.[25] Additionally, the study finds that the risks of
unintentional fatal injury are not significantly higher for genetic children in single parent homes
versus two-parent homes.[25] This difference suggests that removing one biological parent from the
home does not significantly increase risk to the children, but that adding a nonbiological parent to the
home results in a drastic increase in the risk of unintentional fatal injury.[25] Despite the fact that
adding a stepparent to the home increases the available resources in terms of supervision in
comparison to a single-parent home, risk of unintentional fatal injury still significantly rises.[25] This
higher risk of injury for stepchildren can be attributed to the fact that stepparents occupy the same
supervisory role as a genetic parent, yet they have a lower intrinsic commitment to protecting the
child and therefore are less likely to be adequately vigilant.[25] The authors conclude that the
Cinderella effect applies not only to purposeful abuse by stepparents, but is also relevant to
explaining increased rates of accidental fatalities among stepchildren.[25]

Furthermore, a study of parental investment behaviors among American men living in Albuquerque,
New Mexico, reveals a trend of increasing financial expenditures on genetic offspring in comparison
to step-offspring, which also suggests that parents are less inclined to preserve the well-being of
stepchildren.[28] The study assesses paternal investment based on four measures: the probability that
a child attends college, the probability that the child receives money for college, the total money spent
on children, and the amount of time per week spent with children.[28] Four different classifications of
father-child relationships are examined and compared, including fathers living with their genetic
children and stepfathers living with the stepchildren of their current mates.[28] Though the study
finds a clear trend of increasing investment in genetic children, the data also shows that stepfathers
do still invest substantially in stepchildren.[28] The authors explain the parental investment exhibited
by stepfathers towards stepchildren as possibly motivated by the potential to improve the quality or

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increase the duration of the man's relationship with the stepchildren's mother.[28] This studied
corroborates the findings of Lynn White, that stepparents in general provide less social support to
stepchildren than their genetic children.[29]

Though the general trend of the data from this study supports the Cinderella effect, Anderson and
colleagues note that the observed differences between investment in children and stepchildren might
be slightly reduced by a few confounding factors.[28] For example, the authors point out that
stepparenting is a self-selective process, and that when all else is equal, men who bond with unrelated
children are more likely to become stepfathers, a factor that is likely to be a confounding variable in
efforts to study the Cinderella effect.[28] Anderson and colleagues also conducted a similar study of
Xhosa students in South Africa that analyzes the same four classifications of adult-child
relationships, and this study offers similar results to those observed among men in Albuquerque.[30]

Additionally, a study of Hadza foragers in Tanzania by Marlowe also finds evidence of decreased care
provided by men to stepchildren when compared with genetic children.[31] The author uses the
Mann-Whitney U-tests to evaluate most of the observed differences in care exhibited towards
children and stepchildren, and finds that Hadza men spend less time with (U=96), communicate less
with (U=94.5), nurture less, and never play with their stepchildren.[31] Marlowe further argues that
any care that is provided towards stepchildren is likely attributable to the man's mating efforts and
not parental interest in the well-being of the stepchildren.[31]

In further support of the Cinderella effect as elaborated by Daly and Wilson, a study conducted in a
rural village in Trinidad demonstrates that in households containing both genetic children and
stepchildren, fathers devote approximately twice as much time to interaction with genetic offspring in
comparison to stepchildren.[32] Additionally, this study finds that the duration of the relationship
between the stepfather and stepchildren is negatively correlated with the relative proportion of
interaction time and positively correlated with the relative proportion of antagonistic interactions
between the two.[32] As a proportion of total time spent interacting with genetic and stepchildren,
stepfathers are shown to have approximately 75 percent more antagonistic interactions with
stepchildren.[32] In this study, antagonistic interactions are defined as involving physical or verbal
combat or an expression of injury. This includes, for example, spanking, screaming, crying, and
arguing. The duration of the relationship between genetic fathers and children shows a positive
correlation with both relative proportion of interaction time and antagonistic interaction.[32] The
author argues that these results show that in terms of time invested, men favor their children over
stepchildren, and this preference is not attributable to the duration of the adult-child relationship, a
factor which is sometimes believed to be a confounding variable in the Cinderella effect.[32] Though
this study does claim a significant increase in antagonistic behavior between stepparents and
stepchildren and therefore supports the Cinderella effect, it also notes that only six percent of all the
observed parent-child interactions were considered antagonistic, and that the researchers never
noticed any blatant physical child abuse.[32]

Criticism

David Buller

Philosopher of science David Buller, as a part of his general critique of evolutionary psychology [33]
has reviewed Daly and Wilson's data. He argues that evolutionary psychology (EP) mistakenly
attempts to discover human psychological adaptations rather than "the evolutionary causes of
psychological traits." Buller also argues that Daly and Wilson's 1985 Canadian sample included cases
of sexual abuse as well as cases of unintentional omission, such as not buckling a child's seatbelt in
the car. Buller asserts that unintentional omission does not fall under the realm of dangerous acts,
and rather should be designated "maltreatment". He argues that since sexual abuse is not often
accompanied by physical abuse, it is unreasonable to assume that it is motivated by the same kind of
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psychological mechanism as child homicide.[34] Buller also points out that the conclusion that non-
biological parents are more likely to abuse children is contradicted by the fact that even if the rate of
abuse among stepparents was disproportionate, the lowest rate of child abuse is found among
adoptive parents.[35] Daly and Wilson respond to Buller's criticism by stating that Buller confuses the
empirical statistical findings, which define the Cinderella effect, with the proposed theoretical
framework, which offers an evolutionary explanation for the data.[36]

Buller also argues that Daly and Wilson's findings are inherently biased since they use data from
official documents, and the officials collecting that data are trained to take special notice of
stepparents versus biological parents.[37] Furthermore, Buller states that since Daly and Wilson rely
on official reports (such as death certificates) for their data, and that this data is inherently biased
against stepparents.[37] He cites a Colorado study, in which it was found that maltreatment fatalities
were more likely to be correctly reported on death certificates when an unrelated individual was the
perpetrator rather than when a parent was the perpetrator, suggesting that the data is empirically
skewed to support the Cinderella effect.[38] According to this study, by Crume et al., when the
perpetrator of the murder was a parent, maltreatment was correctly noted on the death certificate
only 46 percent of the time. Furthermore, they found that when the perpetrator was an "Other
unrelated (including boyfriend)" individual, maltreatment was reported on the death certificate 86
percent of the time, significantly higher than for parents.[38] Although these statistics seem to provide
evidence of bias against stepparents, further review of the data undermines this conclusion. As
Crume et al. and Daly and Wilson note, maltreatment was only likely to be reported on the death
certificates 47 percent of the time in the case of "Other relatives (including step-parents)," which
represents a marginal increase from the amount of parental maltreatment.[36][38] Therefore, as Daly
and Wilson respond to Buller's critique, this does not seem to be a significant source of error in
studying the Cinderella effect and does not provide evidence for inherent bias in their data.[36]

Temrin et al. Sweden study

The findings of Daly and Wilson have been called into question by one study of child homicides in
Sweden between 1975 and 1995, which found that children living in households with a non-genetic
parent were not at an increased risk of homicide when compared to children living with both genetic
parents. The study, published in 2000 and conducted by Temrin and colleagues argued that when
Daly and Wilson classified homicides according to family situation, they did not account for the
genetic relatedness of the parent who actually committed the crime. In the Swedish sample, in two
out of the seven homicides with a genetic and non-genetic parent, the offender was actually the
genetic parent and thus these homicides do not support Daly and Wilson's definition of the Cinderella
effect.[39]

Daly and Wilson attribute the contrasting findings of the Swedish study to an analytical oversight.
Temrin and colleagues neglect to consider the fact that the proportion of children in living situations
with a stepparent is not constant for all child age groups, but rather increases with age. After
correcting for age differences, the Swedish data set produces results in accordance with the previous
findings of Daly and Wilson. The Swedish sample does show, however, decreased risk to children
living with a stepparent compared to the North American samples collected by Daly and Wilson,
suggesting that there is some degree of cross-cultural variation in the Cinderella effect.[3]

Alternative hypotheses

It has been noted by multiple researchers that child abuse is an intricate issue and is affected by other
factors.[15][39][40] Daly and Wilson state, however, that even if evolutionary psychology cannot
account for every instance of stepparental abuse, this does not invalidate their empirical findings.[36]

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Burgess and Drais propose that child maltreatment is too complex to be explained fully by genetic
relatedness alone and cite other reasons for child maltreatment, such as social factors, ecological
factors and child traits such as disability and age.[15] However, they also note that these traits are
simply indicative, and do not inevitably lead to child maltreatment.[15] Temrin and colleagues also
suggest that there may be other factors involved with child homicide, such as prior convictions, drug
abuse problems, lost custody battles and mental health problems.[39]

In 1984, Giles-Sims and David Finkelhor categorized and evaluated five possible hypotheses that
could explain the Cinderella effect: "social-evolutionary theory", "normative theory", "stress theory",
"selection factors", and "resource theory". The social-evolutionary theory is based on the proposal
that non-genetically related parents will invest less in costly parental duties, due to the fact that their
genes are not being passed on by that individual. The normative theory proposes that, due to genetic
repercussions, incest among genetically related individuals is a widespread taboo and would thus be
less common among biological relatives. They propose that incest among stepfamilies would be less
taboo, since there is no risk of genetic degradation. The stress theory proposes that increased
stressors, which are inherently more common among stepfamilies, cause an increased risk of abuse.
The selection factors theory proposes that individuals who are likely to be stepparents (divorcees) are
likely to be inherently more violent due to emotional disturbances, aggressive impulses, and self-
esteem issues. Due to this, stepparents as a group would have a higher proportion of individuals with
violent-prone characteristics, which would suggest that the abuse is happening due to personality
factors, rather than the stepparental relationship directly. Finally, according to resource theory,
individuals who contribute resources are granted authority, while individuals that lack resources are
denied authority and more likely to resort to violence to obtain authority. It is therefore hypothesized
that stepparents who are able to contribute resources to a family and have those resources be
accepted by the family are less likely to be abusive. However, this hypothesis had yet to be tested
directly on stepfamilies.[40] This paper of Giles-Sims and Finkelhor predates however practically all
empirical studies on the Cinderella effect.

Ethical issues

Discussing the implications of this line of research, Australian psychologist Greg Tooley, author of a
2006 study confirming the existence of the effect,[25] confessed that "it is certainly difficult to talk
about because it is such a hot issue".[41]

See also
Rotten kid theorem
Cinderella complex
Family
Maternal bond
Nuclear family
Parental investment theory
Parenting
Paternal bond
The WAVE Trust

Notes
1. Daly & Wilson (1999), p. 33

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2. Daly & Wilson (2007) Is the "Cinderella Effect" controversial? (http://psych.mcmaster.ca/dalywilso


n/Cinderella_Effect.pdf) Archived (https://web.archive.org/web/20110516102016/http://psych.mcm
aster.ca/dalywilson/Cinderella_Effect.pdf) May 16, 2011, at the Wayback Machine In Crawford &
Krebs (Eds) Foundations of Evolutionary Psychology, pp. 383-400. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum.
3. Daly, M.; M. Wilson (2001). "An assessment of some proposed exceptions to the phenomenon of
nepotistic discrimination against stepchildren" (ftp://psyftp.mcmaster.ca/dalywilson/Papers/Zoologi
caFennica/daly.pdf) (PDF). Annales Zoologici Fennici. 38: 287–296.
4. Crawford (2008), p. 387
5. Crawford (2008), p. 388
6. Daly, M.; Wilson, M. (1985). "Child abuse and other risks of not living with both parents". Ethology
and Sociobiology. 6 (4): 197–210. doi:10.1016/0162-3095(85)90012-3 (https://doi.org/10.1016%2
F0162-3095%2885%2990012-3).
7. Daly & Wilson (1999), p. 8
8. Daly & Wilson (1999), p. 26
9. Daly & Wilson (1999), p. 27
10. Trivers, R. L. (1971). "The Evolution of Reciprocal Altruism". The Quarterly Review of Biology. 46:
35–57. doi:10.1086/406755 (https://doi.org/10.1086%2F406755). S2CID 19027999 (https://api.se
manticscholar.org/CorpusID:19027999).
11. Daly, Martin; Wilson, Margo (1980). "Discriminative Parental Solicitude: A Biological Perspective".
Journal of Marriage and Family. 42 (2): 277–288. doi:10.2307/351225 (https://doi.org/10.2307%2
F351225). JSTOR 351225 (https://www.jstor.org/stable/351225).
12. Bertram, B. C. R. (2009). "Social factors influencing reproduction in wild lions". Journal of
Zoology. 177 (4): 463–482. doi:10.1111/j.1469-7998.1975.tb02246.x (https://doi.org/10.1111%2Fj.
1469-7998.1975.tb02246.x).
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References
Martin Daly; Margo Wilson (1988). Homicide (https://books.google.com/books?id=3p4br9FRAUg
C). Transaction Publishers. ISBN 978-0-202-01178-3. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
Martin Daly; Margo Wilson (11 October 1999). The Truth about Cinderella: A Darwinian View of
Parental Love (https://archive.org/details/truthaboutcinder00mart). Yale University Press.
ISBN 978-0-300-08029-2. Retrieved 4 November 2012.
Crawford, Charles; Dennis Krebs (2008). Foundations of Evolutionary Psychology. New York:
Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. ISBN 978-0-8058-5957-7.
Buss, David (1996). Sex, power, conflict: feminist and evolutionary perspectives. New York:
Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-510357-1.
White, Lynn (1994). Booth, A.; Dunn, J. (eds.). Stepfamilies. Who benefits? Who does not?.
Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum. ISBN 978-0-8058-1544-3.

Further reading
Gelles, Richard J.; Harrop, John W. (January 1991). "The Risk of Abusive Violence Among
Children with Nongenetic Caretakers". Family Relations. 40 (1): 78–83. doi:10.2307/585662 (http
s://doi.org/10.2307%2F585662). JSTOR 585662 (https://www.jstor.org/stable/585662).
Nigel Barber (June 1, 2009), Do parents favor natural children over adopted ones? (http://www.ps
ychologytoday.com/blog/the-human-beast/200906/do-parents-favor-natural-children-over-adopted
-ones), The Human Beast blog on Psychology Today, discussing:
Hamilton, L.; Cheng, S.; Powell, B. (2007). "Adoptive Parents, Adaptive Parents: Evaluating the
Importance of Biological Ties for Parental Investment". American Sociological Review. 72: 95–
116. doi:10.1177/000312240707200105 (https://doi.org/10.1177%2F000312240707200105).
S2CID 145210023 (https://api.semanticscholar.org/CorpusID:145210023).
Gibson, K. (2009). "Differential parental investment in families with both adopted and genetic
children". Evolution and Human Behavior. 30 (3): 184–189.
doi:10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2009.01.001 (https://doi.org/10.1016%2Fj.evolhumbehav.2009.01.00
1).

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cinderella_effect?fbclid=IwAR2EnSWspw6aPHnBXIWr1C_-cTzZ7CEppEAiXcyrJwtRPJpRHq3ISYK5H_A 11/12
28/2/2021 Cinderella effect - Wikipedia

Mindelle Jacobs (July 4, 2010), The Cinderella effect is not just a fairy tale (http://www.edmontons
un.com/comment/columnists/2010/07/02/14594536.html), Edmonton Sun

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