Nurturing Genie Case Study

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Nurturing Genie Studying the differences between nature and nurture—where one starts and the other ends—proves to be incredibly difficult for psychologists. Immediately at birth, nurture begins to take its role and shape a person. There is no way of seeing how one could have been if raised differently or born with different genetics. However, extreme cases of nurture help shed light on this mystery. While psychologists cannot subject people to isolation or other radical situations, once in awhile, they unfortunately encounter someone who has. Personality, behavior, and mental abilities result from both the nature and nurture of a person without question, but to precisely what degree isn’t fully understood. Nurture consists on one’s upbringing as a child: their environment, early relationships, and mental stimulation. Nature rests in one’s…show more content…
As shown in Rosenzweig’s study, nurture certainly seemed to affect mental development. Rats exposed to a stimulating, enriched environment led to more brain growth and complexity in contrast to rats who did not. In Genie’s case, her environment for the first 13 years of her life resembled the latter rats. Locked in a room, never taught to even talk, Genie was deprived of the nurture that would have been mentally stimulating. However, no one could conclusively determine if her disability was something she was born with, or occurred because the poor environment she was subjected to early on. Determined to find out, Genie’s brain activity was recorded in her sleep and then analyzed. The results showed high “sleep spindles,” which were seem in most people who were mentally disabled from birth. Genie’s father also claimed someone said his child was disabled early on. This evidence indicates Genie was likely born with an inherent disability—but of course, her nurture could have severely worsened
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