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Foxe, A.N. (1939). Hirsch, Nathaniel. Dynamic Causes of Juvenile Crime. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Sci-Art Publishers, 1937). Psychoanal. Rev., 26(1):145-146.

(1939). Psychoanalytic Review, 26(1):145-146

Book Reviews

Hirsch, Nathaniel. Dynamic Causes of Juvenile Crime. (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Sci-Art Publishers, 1937)

Review by:
A. N. Foxe

The author was formerly Director of the Wayne County (Michigan) Clinic for Juvenile Delinquency and at present is State Director of the Public Health Survey in New Jersey. He states that although heredity and environment have received considerable attention as causal categories, accidental causes and genius have received relatively little attention. Although this point is stressed, the book shows very little to indicate that the author has made any striking use of the latter two categories in this study. Genius is referred to as an “elusive and only mediate cause.” The book actually concludes with a pessimistic outlook unless men of genius suddenly appear. In spite of these wide and foreboding excursions the author has managed to set a practical problem for himself which mainly involves the first two conventional categories of Heredity and Environment. He manages to present some interesting confirmations of already accepted statistical material.

The two main divisions of the book consist of a statistical analysis of causal factors and eight case studies. The statistical study is based on 604 cases examined by various members of the Clinic. In his statistical compilations, under Hereditary and Environmental Causation, the author includes a motley array of subheadings gathered from the various schools of psychiatry, psychology and psychobiology. Thus Pathological Liars are considered under Heredity Causation, on what basis, the reviewer fails to see. Similarly, Fixations are considered under Environmental Causation.

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