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Ribble, M.A. (1940). Babies are Human Beings: By C. Anderson Aldrich and Mary M. Aldrich. (The Macmillan Co., New York, 1938. Pp. 124. Price $1.75.). Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 21:109-109.
    

(1940). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 21:109-109

Babies are Human Beings: By C. Anderson Aldrich and Mary M. Aldrich. (The Macmillan Co., New York, 1938. Pp. 124. Price $1.75.)

Review by:
Margarethe A. Ribble

This little book contains some valuable information on infant development written in a pleasing and popular style for the modern parent. Its chief purpose seems to be to reassure the average adult as to the wisdom of the baby's 'way of doing things' and to discourage rigid schedules and set standards of behaviour for the first months of life. The instinctual life and its course of development are not discussed, as such, so that the relationship of the various phases of behaviour dealt with is somewhat confused.

The authors develop an interesting idea about the smile of the infant, which they find becomes evident about the fourth week of life. The baby, who up to this time they consider as 'a frightened, serious, impulsively self-protecting' individual, begins his first step toward psychic adjustment by smiling at his mother. He soon discovers that he can please his mother by smiling and with this first friendly contact he 'begins to use his brain'. The smile is closely linked up with vocalizing and the development of speech.

For parents who have not outstanding neurotic difficulties this book may be useful. For those who have to cope with anxiety in themselves and the child's reaction to it there are no suggestions.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

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