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Teachers should avoid it and never give for truth what is not truth. Education should make men free and not slaves.
Are you intelligent and clean ? Are you blest with a real hunger for truth? Have you been a faithful student of child life? Do you really love children? All children? You are saved; go forth and save others.
DR. WILLIAM H. BURNHAM, CLARK UNIVERSITY, WORCESTER, MASS.
The war has greatly increast the scope of mental hygiene. And on the other hand mental hygiene has made to the war a contribution of vast importance and unprecedented character in its examination of recruited officers and men for the detection of nervous and mental disorder, in the reeducation of disabled soldiers, and in its aid to the morale of the army. This last is distinctly the aim of mental hygiene; for the conditions of morale and of mental health are practically the same.
1. Especially the study of nervous disorders in the war has made great contribution to mental hygiene. It appears that shell shock (not surgical shock) is similar to certain mental troubles, hysteria and the like, with which every alienist is familiar, and that conditions of fatigue, anxiety, and strain are the predisposing factors making a person liable to such disorder.
And again the effect of war upon children suggests the need of sound mental hygiene. One of the saddest reports of the Thirty Years' War was that the children were no longer seen playing in the streets of the German cities; and in some localities in the present war it has been said that the children have forgotten how to smile.
It may be said perhaps that the war has put an emphasis upon mental hygiene that it never had before.
2. Physiological studies both before and during the war have placed mental hygiene upon a solid scientific basis. What occurs in the brain when the mind thinks ? was the problem attackt long ago by the great Italian physiologist Mosso. And a long series of investigations since has shown definite physiological changes correlated with mental work, changes in the distribution of the blood, an increast liberation of heat, and increast metabolism. The simplest test of these changes is the increast pulse-rate that accompanies attention.
Among the most important of the physiological investigations are the studies of the glands with internal secretion—the thyroid, the thymus, the pituitary, etc. Altho the function of these glands was not discovered until recent years, a vast literature on the subject has been produced.
These modern studies, especially those by Cannon and Crile, have shown not only that normal growth and development depend upon the proper functioning of these glands, and that the various forms of feeble-mindedness, cretinism, myxoedema, and the like, are caused by defect in one or more of them, but that their normal functioning is significant for our life of feeling and action.
3. Recent studies in psychiatry have also greatly broadened the field of mental hygiene. They have shown the possibility of preventing many forms of mental disorder, especially cases on the border line between the normal and the defective, cases of the depressive type, the various anxiety neuroses, and even some cases of dementia praecox, where suitable environment and suitable training can be provided. They have shown that in many cases the best means of cure is some form of reeducation involving the development of wholesome interests and regular habits of attention and orderly association.
4. Psychology in recent years has made many important contributions to mental hygiene. Among the most noteworthy of these are the results of the Würzburg school in Germany and of Dr. Baird and other followers in this country. These investigations have shown that deeper than the life of perception and ideas are the mental tendencies, the set of the mind, the mental attitudes, and the like.
These attitudes are determined in the schools by the tasks set for the pupils, by the directions given by the teacher, by the presence and behavior of the other children, and by the whole environment of the pupils. Many other investigations, especially in experimental psychology, have widened the scope of mental hygiene. I can speak of only one of these.
5. The most important contribution to mental hygiene providing a method of unlimited application is probably the modern study of the conditioned reflex by the Russian school of Pavlov and the adaptation of this to the study of children by Krasnogorski and by Drs. Mateer and Watson in this country.
Pavlov has developt an elaborate technique for the study of this subject and has shown that the sensation from any receptor organ-sight, hearing, the dermal senses, etc.-may be made a conditioned stimulus by repeated association. Krasnogorski in Russia, Dr. Mateer at Clark University, and Dr. Watson at Johns Hopkins University, have shown that motorconditioned reflexes can be developt in children, and that the ability to form such reflexes is correlated with the development of the mind and brain.
All this is of great importance to education and hygiene, for it furnishes an objective method for studying the development of the brain cortex on the one hand and the growth of habit in the individual child on the other hand. All training in animals and children consists largely in the acquisition of conditioned reflexes.
We know relatively little about the conditioned reflexes developt by our ordinary school and home environment; but the studies made show the vast number of them acquired by a child during the period of school life, groups of habits and associations probably for every teacher and companion, and the importance of these for the mental health of the individual.
If it appears that this broad view of mental hygiene makes it overlap the field of morals and social hygiene, it is true enough that the boundaries are indefinite, and that mental hygiene does have to do with anything which concerns the health and sanity of society as well as of individuals. In the present crisis new problems of the utmost gravity confront us; and these problems, significant for the welfare of society, are matters of vital concern to mental hygiene also.
In any good movement in education there lurks the danger of exaggeration and the development of an extreme that will be the ruin of all the good attained by it.
During the last two years a great moral and educational development has occurred in this country, transforming our somnolent pacificism and selfish individualism into an active, ardent, and united patriotism and into ideals of cooperation, unity, and national and even international service. Men who seldom thought of anybody but themselves and their immediate companions are now sacrificing for others. Young men who perhaps seemed worthless are now apparently saved by the training of the camp. Everybody, in fact, is receiving a training of great value from the war; but care should be taken even here to avoid an overdevelopment and the evils inevitably connected with this.
After a great war there is always an opportunity for education, especially for the defeated nation. In the present war we are bound to be victorious; and after the war will come a time, not only of opportunity, but of great danger in educational matters. The great task for the schools will be to seize the opportunity and to avoid the danger.
A few things are pretty certain. It is certain that during the next ten years we shall have either war or peace. If we have continued war, great military class must be maintained. If, on the other hand, we soon have peace, we can never relapse into our former state of unpreparedness. We must at least be ready to enforce peace; and military training to some extent is likely to be demanded. In either case there is bound to be a large class devoted for a time to military affairs; interest in military affairs is bound to be developt, and military training is likely to appear necessary.
An educational problem already pressing for solution is the question whether we shall have military training and instruction in the high schools of this country. The strong feeling of many educators and physical trainers is that military training is not the best form of education for students in the high school, and that it is not in harmony with the educational aims of the public schools. If, however, this contention is to be satisfactorily maintained it is necessary that the high schools should provide that moral discipline and that training in the sound principles of mental hygiene and
morale that give the preparation necessary for the occupations of peace as well as of war.
Before military training certain habits and attitudes should be developt. A great part of military training today is training in physical education, hygiene, obedience, cooperation, sacrifice of individual interest for the sake of the social group, and in the principles of mental hygiene that make for morale and sanity. We shall never be satisfied again without extended training of this kind. This part of military training should be emphasized. It can and should be given in the public schools. It would be the gravest mistake to leave all this to be provided after school life merely in special military training.
In a time when the danger of mental disorder is more serious than ever before; when the number needing the help of a sound mental hygiene is greater perhaps than ever before; in the storm and stress of war, when the hearts of men and women at home are breaking, and the morale of the best soldiers at the front is being tested; in a time of numerous fads and cults, when men cry, Lo here, or Lo there, is the kingdom of health, mental hygiene preaches its quiet gospel, based upon scientific fact, and offers the aid of our vastly increast knowledge to those in grievous need of sympathy and aid, a gospel quite as important for children as for adults, quite as helpful for normal children as for the defective.
A GENERAL SURVEY OF CHILD-STUDY
DR. G. STANLEY HALL, PRESIDENT, CLARK UNIVERSITY, WORCESTER, MASS.
[The first part of this address was a sketch of the history of child-study during the twenty-five years which had elapsed since it was given a department in the National Education Association.-EDITOR.)
But I turn from these more familiar fields to indicate also only roughly and inadequately as the most notable of all contributions to paidology those that have come to us from the psychoanalysts. Here we have studies of perhaps twoscore eminent men and women which show how the chief influences that shaped their characters and their careers originated in the infantile years, and added to this we have what has been estimated at nearly twoscore thousand clinical studies that show that it is to these years that we must chiefly look for the sources of all mental and moral abnormalities. It is preeminently thus during the first four years of life that all the fundamental traits of character and disposition or diathesis are formed. These very rarely change after the age of three or four. These are just the years that the adult forgets, but the character of life-interests and the intensity and direction of its momentum are already establisht. The infantile in us is the unconscious, and the unconscious includes most of what we call instincts, feelings, sentiments, emotions, or, in popular language, the heart, out of which are the issues of life. The studies of childhood in this field thus take us down to deeper strata of human nature than the plummet of any previous psychology has sounded. The child is vastly older than the adult, not only because its traits precede those of adulthood, which is a far later acquisition, but because the mainspring of every disturbance of sanity or virtue is also found in this first quadrennium of life. Moreover, all thru life we live on a very slippery, genetic scale and easily slide back or relapse into infantile states if fatigue, disappointment, or disease befalls us. All the delusions of all insanities, all our dreams, are made on the same pattern as our habitual dream types, and these are the warp
and woof out of which the day dreams, reveries, and wishes of childhood, which fancy can so often almost make come true, are made.
Thus the theoretical and the practical in this new line of paidology are closely knit together, and we have here at last found a number of fundamental mechanisms which go distinctly beyond the old doctrine of the four temperaments, a field where psychology had made almost no progress all the way from Hippocrates to Wundt. I have time today to glance only briefly at a very few of these traits:
1. Active and passive (Nietzsche, Freud, Jung), which does not coincide with masculine and feminine. Actives are more prone to anger, passives to fear; the former do; the latter learn or adapt. In their pathological extremes the actives may be cruel and the passives crave to suffer.
2. Another fundamental type of character laid down in the first three or four years of life is erethism. Some have markt power, that others lack, to draw on their reserves in emergencies and exigencies. Its physical phenomenon is second breath. It is the same diathesis that often brings the exaltation that poets call the affilatus of the muse versus the plodder. Those who have it can tap reservoirs of phyletic energy.
3. Somewhat related is the other distinction between the egoists and the altruists, those who are selfish and prone to hyperindividuation versus those in whom genesis and self-sacrifice culminate. One type wants to do, be, get everything, regardless of others and perhaps of means. The other type is inclined to self-abnegation. It loves to serve, to die for others or causes greater than itself. The extreme types are set forth in Christianity as Christ and Satan.
4. The attitude toward authority is now establisht. The father is the child's first object of reverence, and it is the father whom he would imitate. He loves but also fears him. He has to submit to his will, perhaps to his chastisement, so love and respect alternate with resentment, obedience with revolt. Now the father is the modulus on which is fashioned the child's attitude toward great men, the community, state, church, or God himself. So we have, on the one hand, those who develop morbid symptoms at every suggestion of control, constraint, command. They are negativists who respond to any hint of compulsion by protesting their readiness to die for