Background Early history

The antecedents of therapeutic communities are found throughout the history of care for the mentally ill. Communities providing sanctuary for mentally ill people have been known as far back as the fourteenth century at Geel in Belgium. In 1796 a humane institution called The Retreat was opened by the Quakers in York, England. There it was discovered that personal relationships and social expectations in a family-like atmosphere enabled previously dangerous and unpredictable individuals to control and modify their behaviour.(6) This model strongly influenced the creation of asylums in Britain and the United States in the first half of the nineteenth century. It was eventually overshadowed by the sheer size the asylums grew to (a thousand or more beds) and by the rise of biological psychiatry with a consequent loss of interest by doctors in social and interpersonal factors.

Another historical antecedent emerged in the early twentieth century. Pioneers in therapeutic education, inspired by a Christian belief in the therapeutic power of love and by Freud's new method of psychoanalysis (see CMpĆ­ei..3.;.1), created residential schools for maladjusted children which demonstrated most of the practices and beliefs outlined above. The collective term was planned environment therapy. It was most closely associated with the work of Homer Lane, A. S. Neill, and David Wills. (7)

Funny Wiring Autism

Funny Wiring Autism

Autism is a developmental disorder that manifests itself in early childhood and affects the functioning of the brain, primarily in the areas of social interaction and communication. Children with autism look like other children but do not play or behave like other children. They must struggle daily to cope and connect with the world around them.

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