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Freud, A. (1972). The Child as a Person in his Own Right. Psychoanal. St. Child, 27:621-625.

(1972). Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 27:621-625

The Child as a Person in his Own Right

Anna Freud

CHILDREN ARE PRESUMED BY LAW TO BE INCOMPLETE BEINGS DURING the whole period of their immaturity. Their utter inability to fulfill their own basic needs, or even to maintain life without extraneous help, justifies their being automatically assigned by birth


This article will form part of a forthcoming book entitled Beyond the Best Interest of the Child, planned with Joseph Goldstein and Albert J. Solnit as co-authors. Since this book is meant to reach a wider and for the most part a nonanalytic audience, much is stated here that will be familiar to analytic readers.

The material used in this essay steams from the author's experiences gained during work in the Hampstead Child-Therapy Clinic, which is at present supported by the Field Foundation, Inc., New York; the Foundation for Research in Psychoanalysis, Beverly Hills, Calif.; the Freud Centenary Fund, London; the Anna Freud Foundation, New York; the National Institute for Mental Health, Bethesda, Maryland; the Grant Foundation, New York; the New-Land Foundation, Inc., New York; and a number of private supporters.

All copyrights retained by the authors.

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