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What are feral children?
Feral or wild children are victims of privation.
This means they have been isolated and failed to
form any attachments in early childhood. This
can be a result of institutional care or extreme
neglect. On the following slides are examples of
both.…read more

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Genie Wiley
Genie was locked in a room by her father, she
was tied to a potty seat, sat alone and had no
one to talk to for 10years. Genie was 13 years old
when she was discovered, she could not stand properly or speak instead
she whimpered like an animal. Genie had been socially and emotionally
deprived for 13 years. She never fully recovered from her privation, this
may have been because of her extreme case, because she was
`discovered' too late or because
later on in her life progress that had been made was lost
when funds ran out for her program. Genie was then
passed from foster home to foster home and abused in
one of them. She now lives in a care home for mental
underdeveloped adults in California and is once again
speechless.…read more

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Czech Twins - Koluchova
Twins boys JM and PM were brought up in care after the
death of their mother. At 18 months they returned to live
with their father and stepmother. The father was of low intellect and the
stepmother was particularly brutal in her treatment of the twins. The boys
suffered serious privation between the ages of 18 months and 7 years. They
were locked in an unheated cellar, away from human company, starved and
beaten. When discovered they had no speech, were terrified of people,
couldn't walk properly and had serious health problems. They were
subsequently adopted by two sisters providing a secure & permanent home as
well as attending a school for children with learning difficulties for intensive
rehabilitation. They then went on to form
strong emotional bonds and had above average intelligence by
the age of 20. Clearly the outcome of this case is very different
to that of Genie's case.…read more

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Hodges & Tizard (1989)
Hodges & Tizard followed sixty five British children over a 16 years period,
who were living in institutional care until the age of four. During their time
in care they had not been able to form attachments due to the high
turnover of staff. At the age of four, 25 of the children were returned to
their biological parents, 33 were adopted and 7 remained in the institution
with occasional fostering. Hodges & Tizard concluded that those who were
adopted and some of those restored seemed to develop good family
relationships. Yet the majority of the
restored group continued to experience
some problems and difficulties in their
family relationships, notably with siblings.
Both groups showed similar difficulties in
relationships with peers.…read more

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What are the effects of privation?
All case studies are unique and everyone will react differently to
privation. Yet from looking at a number of case studies we can try to
generalise the effects of privation, these being both physical and
emotional:
· Difficulty in forming attachments ­ unable to depend on, trust or
love others.
· Antisocial behaviour ­ including a lack of guilt and selfishness, wary
or overfamiliar with strangers.
· Communication difficulties ­
illiteracy, mute.
· Health problems ­ lack of
development, walking difficulties.…read more

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