September 1965

The New Marriage: Pediatrics and Psychology

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Social Relations, Harvard University.

Am J Dis Child. 1965;110(3):272-278. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1965.02090030286009

I WAS MOST willing to speak at this meeting because I sense a new liaison between the behavioral sciences and pediatrics, and I feel a bit like a participant in an ecumenical council. I am excited by the contemporary marriage between pediatrics and the social sciences, a marriage that should lead to a corpus of cognitive products that would not have occurred had each remained single for much longer. I do not wish to celebrate this new relation by reminding us of the mutual intellectual gains of cross-disciplinary work. These gains are relatively obvious and can be summarized succinctly.

A liaison between pediatric and psychological inquiry forces the behavioral scientist into direct contact with psychopathology. This often brutal exposure has two immediate therapeutic effects. First, it forces a questioning of any rigid theoretical orthodoxy which the social scientist might have been hiding under, for the chasm between the best of

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