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Zachry, C.B. (1939). Contributions of Psychoanalysis to the Education of the Adolescent. Psychoanal Q., 8:98-107.

(1939). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 8:98-107

Contributions of Psychoanalysis to the Education of the Adolescent

Caroline B. Zachry

It may be wise to indicate in a few words at the outset of this paper the basic concepts of the philosophy of education which it represents. According to this view, the concern of education is with the total development of the individual rather than with some single aspect of it such as, for example, his growth in intellectual proficiency. It is recognized that development proceeds as a whole, although for purposes of discussion this must be considered in its physical, emotional, intellectual, and social aspects, and although the rate of development in each aspect may differ within the individual. It is recognized, further, that development varies widely from person to person. In its concern, therefore, with the development of the whole individual, education should be adapted to meet the needs of each as a unique person.

Since the growing individual must learn to adjust himself to society, it is accepted as the fundamental purpose of education to help him in this process. This does not, of course, necessarily mean that he must learn to accept society as he finds it, but that he must face it as it is and adjust himself to it in order to be able to participate in satisfying ways and to be able perhaps to change it.

With such a concept of the individual with whom it is concerned and of its responsibility toward that individual, the processes of education logically place emphasis upon the child's own present experience and upon his past experiences as these influence the present. Its processes are based on the belief that the child learns best to deal with life through experience in dealing with it and through vicarious experience which helps him to understand his own; that he learns best when the learning fulfils a conscious purpose.

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