Genie the Wild Child Essay
Genie, the second case of wild child was found in a room tied to a potty chair. Genie was kept in a room locked away because her father thought she was retarded at birth until the age of 13, when she was rescued by a social worker. She was locked away from normal civilization and any type of socialization, and she was beaten for making noises. Genie was an infant trapped in a 13 year old body, because she could only make infant like sounds and no words or sentences. Genie’s brain waves were adnormal, but doctors believed that she could learn. They began teaching and trying to develop her brain through forming relationships.
Genie begin to speak and say words; but they were difficult to understand. Genie progress gave doctors hope that she would get better. Another known case about a boy name Victor, that was documented before Genie was the blueprint of how to handle Genie’s case. Victor was raised in the woods and counld speak or say any words. Victor was found naked and with scares all over his body. Doctors believed they could civilize Victor and that he had become retarded because of the way he was raised in the wild with lack of social forms and civilization.
In the video there is an example of object permanence; the doctor held food in a mirror while Victor was looking in the mirror. Victor tried to get the food out of the mirror until he realized it was not in the mirror but in the doctor’s hand behind him. Victor was known as the Wild Child and there was a movie made about him and his treatment, that aired a week after Genie was found. Genie is now 14 years of age and the doctors wondered if she would ever learn to talk normally. The doctors believed that if the first language is not acquired by puberty, it would be to late for Genie to develop language.
Genie was very attached to ballons and different color threads; and wanted to learn words for different objects. Genie moved into the home of her language doctor and Genie began hording containers of liquid, which doctors didn’t know why. The language doctor wanted to be Genie’s foster parent, because she believe all the different testing was not helping Genie and wanted to keep all the other doctors away from Genie. The hospital was against her becoming Genie’s foster parent and the language doctor was denied.
They found another doctor to Genie’s foster parent. The doctor’s family believed she needed alot of help and that she could learn. They taught her how to express her anger in fits and then verbally, instead of tearing at herself and hurting herself. Genie could put together small sentences like a child around the age of 1 or 2. She could now read simple sentences and express things about her past in sentences. Genie was learning her first language and began attending a nursery school. Victor progress slowed down and he never really learned to talk.
Victor died in his 40’s in 1828, Victor died without a happy ending. The doctors wanted Genie to have a better ending then Victor. They begin to teach Genie sign language, because they thought this was where doctors had fell with Victor. They could never determine if Genie was retarded at birth, but it was found that Genie was growing mentally after she was found. When the government stoped the funding for Genie the foster family gave her up and Genie reunited with her mother in 1975. Genie still could not put together sentences like a normal person of her age.
After a while Genie’s mother could not handle taking care of Genie, so back in foster care she went. While in foster care Genie endured mental and pyhsical abuse. Genie was abused and mistreated so badly she had resorted back to not speaking, like when they had originally found her. Then all of the doctors and the hospital was being sued for exessively testing and researching, and putting testing before her well-being. It was said that these tests was not good for Genie and too repetitive for learn productively. These tests was also not approved testing, and was not helping Genie.
Genie lived the rest of her life in adult foster care and she never had the ability to speak or talk at her normal age compacity. Since Genie was locked away from any type of social skills, she never heard people talking or conversing. She was denied the ability to mimmic the adults around her, which is needed to develop speech. Genie needed to hear other people talking and conversating with each other to develop that language skill. After being found, Genie had missed critical development time, and would take hard work to try and make up that time.
Some of the doctors in Genie case seemed to be fuel by money and fame. The method of treatment was not successful and Genie’s best interest was not at heart. It would take a long time for Genie to be able to communicate properly, but she would never be cognitively the same age as her birth age unless she could gain two or three cognitive years in one. In order to gain those years back Genie would have had to work harder and the skill level would have to be increased more. Genie learning was stifald because to test were not change in skill level, it seems as though she was taking the same test but in a different form.