This book presents a clearly organized and, for a single volume, a surprisingly comprehensive and yet lucidly written survey of the psychology of the young developing human individual.
Child psychology is important for at least three reasons: first, it deals with the period of mental life that is scientifically interesting and significant in its own right; second, it provides an indispensable body of fact which alone makes possible the real understanding of many adult psychological characteristics that otherwise seem to be outside the deterministic bounds of science; and third, it forms one important foundation for many fields of application, including education, social work, mental hygiene, and parenthood.
The recent and relevant literature in the field covered by this book is extensive. The task of bringing, this material together has not been interpreted as one of mere compilation. On the contrary, the material has been so organized and evaluated that a coherent picture is presented of the many-sided mental life of the immature human being.
Above all, this book will recommend itself to the serious student of childhood because of its broad biological background and inclusive scope. A mere consideration of the number of references cited and the wide variety of topics listed in the table of contents will show how much more adequately this volume covers this field than has been true in the case of any book on childhood which has been written from the standpoint of any one of the special schools of psychology.
Here are considered the mechanisms of heredity and the prenatal and postnatal development of structure and function in the living human individual. There is included also a consideration of forms of activity of the child which are specifically a result of contact with the social system into which each child . . .