Greatness Strikes Where It Pleases Historical Context

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Societal attitudes about mental retardation changed considerably over the course of the twentieth century. In the United States in the early part of the century, individuals with mental retardation were generally sent away to schools for the feeble-minded, where standards of care varied widely. These were usually large institutions, each accommodating more than one thousand children and adults. Most of the institutions were in rural areas. They often had gardens and a fully operational farm. The male inmates worked on the farm, operating the heavy machinery and tending to the animals. Females did domestic chores such as laundry. Those who were only mildly retarded cared for the more severe cases and also for the young children. Some inmates returned to their families for holidays.

Social trends in the early twentieth century, however, did not favor enlightened treatment of the mentally retarded. Instead of...

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This section contains 911 words
(approx. 3 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Greatness Strikes Where It Pleases Study Guide
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Greatness Strikes Where It Pleases from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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