Handbook of Mental Deficiency: Psychological Theory and Research

By Norman R. Ellis | Go to book overview

INTRODUCTION

Man, unlike animals lower in the phyletic scale, protects the maimed and crippled organism. In this age of humanitarian reform, the conscience of society demands humane care as well as a sharper focus of scientific technology on the inadequate member and the problem of adaptation. The scientific study of the inadequate human is a recent innovation in history. Genetics has given insight into seemingly complex phenomena. Medical science has made remarkable progress in freeing mankind from many afflictions. However, some conditions have been resistant to scientific advance. Cerebral palsy, epilepsy, the choreas, psychosis, alcoholism, and mental deficiency are examples which have behavioral involvement. Preventive measures have reduced the incidence of some. In the main, attempts at remediation have met with little success.

For the conditions in which man's commerce with his environment is inadequate, the onus for care and remediation falls, in large part, on the behavioral sciences. This is particularly true for the mental afflictions. Of these, mental deficiency, perhaps, has received less attention. From a humane standpoint, care and treatment of the defective have improved. Social agencies are more sensitive to the needs of the defective living in the community. Institutional care has become better, although it still falls far below society's aspirations. Both innovations have made serious demands upon the economy as well as upon professional and scientific talent. The methods and techniques of care and training have changed little since the turn of the century. Pedagogical procedures, vocational training regimens, psychological treatments, and social and self-help training are largely those employed with the normal individual or with some other clinical population.

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Handbook of Mental Deficiency: Psychological Theory and Research
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page v
  • Contributors vii
  • Foreword ix
  • Preface xi
  • Contents xiii
  • Introduction 1
  • Part I 9
  • 1 - Field Theory in Mental Deficiency 11
  • Introduction 11
  • References 36
  • 2 - A Social Learning Approach to Mental Retardation 41
  • Summary 86
  • References 86
  • 3 - Hull - Spence Behavior Theory and Mental Deficiency 92
  • Introduction 92
  • A Summing-Up 129
  • References 129
  • 4 - The Stimulus Trace and Behavioral Inadequacy 134
  • Summary 155
  • References 155
  • 5 - The Role of Attention in Retardate Discrimination Learning 159
  • References 220
  • 6 - Intelligence and Brain Damage 224
  • References 251
  • 7 - Genetic Aspects of Intelligent Behavior 253
  • References 291
  • 8 - The Application of Piaget's Theory to Research in Mental Deficiency 297
  • Introduction 297
  • References 323
  • 9 - Social Psychologies of Mental Deficiency 325
  • Summary 348
  • References 348
  • 10 - Psychological Studies of Mental Deficiency in the Soviet Union 353
  • Part II 389
  • 11 - Learning: Verbal, Perceptual-Motor, and Classical Conditioning 391
  • References 420
  • 12 Discrimination Learning 424
  • 12 Discrimination Learning 436
  • 13 - Problem - Solving and Conceptual Behavior 439
  • Conclusions 458
  • References 458
  • 14 - Sensory Processes and Mental Deficiency 463
  • Summary 476
  • References 476
  • 15 - Perceptual Processes 480
  • Conclusions 506
  • References 507
  • 16 - Language and Communication of Mental Defectives 512
  • Introduction 512
  • Summary and Overview 550
  • References 550
  • 17 - Psychophysiological Studies in Mental Deficiency 556
  • 17 - Psychophysiological Studies in Mental Deficiency 569
  • References 571
  • 18 - Abnormal Behavior and Mental Deficiency 574
  • Introduction 574
  • Summary and Conclusions 595
  • References 595
  • 19 - Motor Skills in Mental Deficiency 602
  • Summary 626
  • References 626
  • 20 - Research in Activity Level 632
  • Summary 657
  • References 657
  • 21 - Academic Skills 664
  • Summary 687
  • References 687
  • Contributors 691
  • Name Index 699
  • Subject Index 713
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