Terminology

Since I am going to be doing a lot of writing and translation on the subject, and dealing with specific case studies, I need to get my terminology right. I looked briefly at this when I analysed the work of Jim Ferris, but I wanted to make sure of a number of things. Although the terms ‘idiot’, ‘imbecile’ and ‘moron’ are now definitely pejorative, when Hine used them they were actually the medical terms used to describe adults with mental ages of < 2, 3-7, 8-12 respectively, while the term ‘feeble-minded’ was an umbrella term that referred to “[P]ersons who may be capable of earning a living under favourable circumstances, but are incapable from mental defect, existing from birth or from an early age: (1) of competing on equal terms with their normal fellows, or (2) of managing themselves and their affairs with ordinary prudence.” Continue reading “Terminology”

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