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October 1, 1939

FACTORS INFLUENCING DEVELOPMENT OF SEXUAL ATTITUDES AND SEXUAL AWARENESS IN CHILDREN

Author Affiliations

BALTIMORE
From the Children's Psychiatric Clinic of the Harriet Lane Home for Invalid Children, Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Am J Dis Child. 1939;58(4):738-745. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1939.04380010048004
Abstract

The student of human sexual behavior is becoming more interested in the average child as he actually thinks, feels and acts. He is asking for facts directly supplied by children as well as about children. This is in direct contrast to the attitude which existed before the turn of the present century. During the former period the sexual attitudes and sexual awareness of children were referred to in terms of "degeneracy" or "perversion" or were presented as examples of precocious development of a hypothetic sex instinct.

The present day investigator has developed methods for meeting the child on his own level of spontaneous interest in sex and day to day awareness of sexual topics. This has been made possible despite the fact that in present day culture children at an early age become aware that certain topics may not be mentioned, that particular parts of the body may not be

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