Helping Children

Adeline G. Levine, Murray Levine
Considering the complex wave of problems with which children and young adults are now confronted, we often forget -- and have been poor at recording -- the events, conditions, and creative contributions that pioneered community awareness and advocacy on behalf of young people. In this accessible and stimulating book, Murray and Adeline Levine recount the social history of helping services to children in this country, a history which begins roughly between 1890 and the mid-1920s. Likewise they examine the emergence of community-oriented services, and the dynamic relationship between services and their changing social context. In studying the past, the Levines search the past for what it might tell us about the current crop of problems faced by community psychologists, mental health and social service administrators and policy makers, social workers, social psychiatrists, clinicians, and activists of all stripes. The authors discover not only that these problems are strikingly familiar, but that what is new in a field may not necessarily be better. The Levines recount the accomplishments of some early settlement houses, the establishment of the Juvenile Court, and the emergence of the child guidance clinic. Recent developments in the field -- welfare and aid to families with dependent children, child protection, and abortion and birth control services -- are also placed in historical context and discussed in light of today's helping services. Professionals and students in clinical and community psychology, public health, social work, psychiatry, and sociology, as well as educators and interested lay readers, will find both insights from the past and keys to the future in this thoughtful, important volume.


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