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Additional info for Adolescence : its social psychology, with an introduction to recent findings from the fields of anthropology, physiology, medicine, psychometrics and sociometry

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It reappeared in the next century in the suggestion of Comenius in his Great Didactic that schooling should be divided into four six-yearly periods in which teachers should exercise first the senses, then the memory and imagination, next the understanding and the judgment and finally the harmonising will; and it attained dignified elaboration in Rousseau’s pronouncement that “each age and condition of life has a perfection and maturity of its own”. 34 THEORIES ABOUT ADOLESCENCE Rousseau combined the earlier emphasis on discrete stages of development with the suggestion that there was a correspondence between the growth of the individual and what he took to be the history of the race.

The Adolescent Society. , The Adolescent: His Society, Rev. Educ. , loc. cit. [7]. CHAPTER IV THEORIES ABOUT ADOLESCENCE Recognition of individual and social problems specific to adolescence appears to be of relatively recent growth. A brief survey of its development is of some relevance here. Recorded discussions of education among Egyptians, Jews and Greeks in preChristian times carried memories of the rituals of primitive initiation ceremonies; and their expectation of uniform and sudden maturing was re-echoed through many later centuries by writers who had little to say beyond an emphasis on the discreteness of the different periods of childhood and an assumption that there was a clearly-defined and swift transition to adult status at some point at which wise admonition could profitably be directed by a parent to a child or by a teacher to a pupil.

Loss of morale in times of adult stress, in unemployment, disablement, bereavement or war, has been shown to be greatest among those who have had least experience of such contributory functioning. 7 These basic psychological needs of acceptance, of opportunities to show tenderness, of adventure, of making a contribution to the group and of some understanding of the nature of the universe, are satisfied in different fashions at different ages and in differing social groups; and many of the changes in wishes and in attitudes which puzzle young people and their parents are comprehensible only in the light of a knowledge of such variations.

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