Feral Child Case Study

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Feral Child Task This task will majorly focus on the lack of social and cognitive development of Genie and its connection with Piaget’s and Erickson’s human psychological development theories. As one of the most well- known feral children in the 20th century, the young girl Genie had been confined to a room, isolated and abused by her parents for over a decade before the rescue. Due to the severely abnormal development occurred in the childhood, Genie’s linguistic ability was nearly undeveloped, her limbs were not fully extended, her development was delayed from various perspectives. Piaget’s theory of cognitive development states four stages of cognitive development. During the first Sensorimotor Stage which Piaget…show more content…
Erickson’s theory demonstrates eight periods of human social development from infancy to late adulthood which each period is associated with a psychosocial crisis which could cause a positive or negative effect on the person’s growth. Due to the isolation occurred in her early infancy, Genie failed to form a close attachment to anyone. Also, Erickson’s theory states that interactions with others are critical to social development. Since being locked in a room for over a decade didn’t give much of a chance of socialising, it can be assumed that due to the lack of the foundation of social development, Genie did not develop a trusting relationship during the first period of trust verse mistrust. Failing to develop a positive outcome in this stage eventually led to the anti-social personality of Genie, it included the behaviour of the fear towards physical contact and not trusting anyone. Also, the development of mistrust brought negative impact on the further social development of…show more content…
During this stage, children start to interact more with peers in school. Through interacting with other kids, children will not only practice their social ability but gain a sense of initiative through planning things themselves as well, thus to feel confident in their ability and decision-making. It is important for children to explore and plan activities by themselves to achieve the feeling of control, yet Genie was not able to decide or try anything in her early childhood. On the contract, she got beaten by her father whatever she did. Therefore, combining the autism and the lack of confidence she expressed after the rescue, we can assume after the fails of the previous development, Genie was apparently not an initiative child. The tragedy case of the feral child Genie shows the critical value of childhood to both cognitive and social development of human. Although her language and social skills had improved a lot since she was rescued, Genie would never become a fully developed person due to the isolation and abuse she had suffered in her
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