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February 1967

Microcosms: Structural, Psychological, and Religious Evolution in Groups.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1967;16(2):251-253. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1967.01730200119019

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The author has written an exciting and stimulating book. It is a treatise that all, no matter what their point of view, will find much to quarrel with and more to ponder. Slater's purpose is to look into "some fascinating and important phenomena about social systems." He does not attempt to delineate a complete theory of small groups, but to inquire into aspects of group life that are difficult to explain in most theories.

The raw data for these explorations consist primarily of the myths and fantasies produced by small groups who meet together for the purpose of sensitivity training. (Such groups are designed as learning situations in which "the course content" is the group itself and the individuals within it; their initial character and energizing forces typically stem from the withdrawal of the structure provided in other group situations by leaders or by

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