A Standard Reference
THE CHILD IN AMERICA, by William Ι. Thomas and Dorothy Swain, Thomas. Knopf. 583 pp. Price $5.00 Postpaid of The Survey.
THE CHILD IN AMERICA is a study in the causation and treatment of the behavior maladjustments of youth. The first one hundred pages discuss the varieties of maladjustment. Typical behavior difficulties are illustrated by concrete, descriptive case materials. The writers find that the factors causative of these maladjustments are divided between two general fields—the organic peculiarities of the individual (physical, mental, and emotional endowments and deficiencies) and the social situation to which that individual must adjust.
Programs for the treatment and prevention of delinquency are discussed in detail and carefully evaluated as to their success. Among the programs discussed are the juvenile court (especially the Cincinnati, Boston and Chicago courts) ; correctional institutions (the Berkshire Industrial Farm, the Children's Village at Dobbs Ferry, the George Junior Republic and Dr. Van Water's El Retiro are presented as notable examples); placement in foster homes (Healy's work in particular) ; child-guidance clinics (as illustrated by the Commonwealth clinics and the Illinois Institute for Juvenile Research); visiting teaching and school counselling (the White Williams Foundation of Philadelphia, the Rochester experiment, the Commonwealth program, and the set-up at Erasmus Hall in Brooklyn are discussed in detail) ; character education ín the schools; parent education and various community organizations (the Y.M.C.A. and Y.W.C.A., the Boy and Girl Scouts and Columbian Squires, the Big Brother and Big Sister organizations, settlements, the Boys' Club Federation, service-club programs, and the like).
The findings of recent researches into the causation of behavior maladjustments are dealt with in comprehensive but
( 816) critical fashion. Under The Psychometric Approach, the authors discuss the relationship of test intelligence to original nature and experience (Terman's point of view, the studies by Freeman and Burks on foster children, Burt's study of the relation of intelligence to schooling, and Gordon's study of Gypsy children and "canal boat" children are presented in detail), to school success and social adequacy, and to anti-social behavior (where studies by Slawson, Burt, Fernald, Murchison, and Haggerty are presented). Under The Personality Testing Approach are taken up attempts to "test" or measure temperamental traits, emotional responses, attitudes (the work of Hartshorne and May on character traits, of Moore and Gilliand on aggressiveness, of Landis on the physical expression of emotional experiences, of Downey on will-temperament, of Marston en introversion-extroversion, of Allpοrt .on ascendance-submission, of Travis on suggestibility and negativism, and of Woodworth on the psychoneurotic inventory) and the relationship of the performance on personality tests to delinquent behavior (Mathews, Slawson, and others). Other chapters are on The Psychiatric Approach, The Physiological-Morphological Approach, The Sociological Approach and The Methodology of Behavior Study.
The authors have brought a unique preparation to the problem of methodology and The Child in America is a notable addition to the literature on behavior maladjustment. The authors have organized, and presented without bias, a vast amount of material that has hitherto been inaccessible. Social workers, schoolmen, physicians, psychiatrists, judges will find the book not only useful but indispensable. Lt will be a standard reference work for years to come.
ΗΑRVEY ZORBAUGH New York University