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F., J.C. (1924). Childhood: Cyril Burt. The Causes and Treatment of Juvenile Delinquency. Psyche, 1921, Vol. II, pp. 232 and 339; 1922, Vol. III, p. 56.. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 5:215-216.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: Childhood: Cyril Burt. The Causes and Treatment of Juvenile Delinquency. Psyche, 1921, Vol. II, pp. 232 and 339; 1922, Vol. III, p. 56.

(1924). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 5:215-216

Childhood: Cyril Burt. The Causes and Treatment of Juvenile Delinquency. Psyche, 1921, Vol. II, pp. 232 and 339; 1922, Vol. III, p. 56.

J. C. F.

This series of articles is perhaps the most important study of delinquency that has been made in England from the psychological point of view, the data having been collected from a first-hand examination of many cases by an observer who enjoys both exceptional gifts and exceptional opportunities for work of this description. The psychological factors concerned in juvenile delinquency are grouped under two main heads—Intellectual and Emotional. Under the first head are considered mental deficiency, mental backwardness, educational backwardness and supernormal ability. The consideration of emotional conditions begins with an interesting table of offences, from which the conclusion is drawn that the commoner delinquencies committed by the young consist of the original or slightly modified reactions prompted by the universal instincts. This leads to a consideration of the instincts, the broad outline of the treatment for the most part following McDougall, though a 'nomadic instinct' is added to McDougall's list and a central factor of 'general emotionality' is postulated. Sentiments and complexes are then considered in their relation to delinquency and in this part of the work much use is made of psycho-analytic concepts, especially in the treatment of mixed or ambivalent sentiments. Thus considerable space is allotted to the 'step-mother complex', the authority and disgust complexes, sex complexes and complexes of inferiority and self-assertion. In these ambivalent complexes the positive or love aspects predominate in the neurotic, but in delinquents it is generally the negative or hate aspect which is the stronger. In conclusion the author urges the desirability of an intensive study of each individual offender.

These articles are full of interesting detail and sound psychological

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understanding: they undoubtedly constitute a most useful application of psychological and psycho-analytic methods to a most important field, and (through their profounder psychological insight) carry a step further the work so well begun by Healy in America.

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Article Citation

F., J.C. (1924). Childhood. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 5:215-216

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