RESEARCH TEAM OPERATIONS
THE purpose of this appendix is to provide for clinical and social science colleagues, as well as other interested readers, a more detailed account of the concepts and methods of the Midland study.
The pilot investigation which we have reported in this book was of course preceded by numerous developments in theory, research, and application, carried on by many people from various professional disciplines. Some of these efforts are loosely grouped under the rubric of "Social Psychiatry." Social psychiatric theory includes the perspectives of the cultural anthropologist and those of the investigator in psychosomatic medicine. Social psychiatric research has ranged from studying the effects of various rehabilitation techniques on alcoholics to compiling statistics on instances of combat breakdown in war. Action programs in social psychiatry include the therapeutic use of group dynamics in organizations as well as marriage counseling and mental hospital reform.
It would seem that any and every concern with the relationship between people and their environment -- regarding as relevant all levels of personality functioning and all dimensions of social and cultural process -- has been considered at one time or another by those who said they were committed to a social-psychiatric approach.
In a review of the field, Leighton, Clausen, and Wilson (19) suggest four issues which seem to have been involved in most of the investigations and action programs which have been called socio-psychiatric. They are: a concern with concepts of normality and abnormality; a concern with relationship between the social environment and personality development, defining "chances for health" as one aspect of human maturation; the implications of cultural and cross-cultural diversity for effective understanding and prevention of mental illness;