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Christmas in Purgatory: A Photographic Essay on Mental Retardation
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Christmas in Purgatory: A Photographic Essay on Mental Retardation

4.57  ·  Rating Details  ·  37 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
This classic photo essay of legally sanctioned human abuse in state institutions was written and photographed (1965) long before the current right-to-treatment lawsuits on behalf of institutionalized people.
Spiral-bound, 121 pages
Published June 1st 1974 by Human Policy Press
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Sarah
Apr 20, 2014 Sarah rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2014
I find institutional history fascinating. It's not just a history of institutional care, but of society and what was observed as acceptable and normal. Below are my favorite quotes:
The question one might ask is, Is it possible to prevent these conditions? Although we are convinced that to teach severely retarded adults to wear clothes one must invest time and patience, we believe it possible to do so-given adequate staff. There is one more require- ment. The staff has to be convinced that reside
...more
Aaron the Pink Donut
Oct 17, 2007 Aaron the Pink Donut rated it it was amazing
One of the most disturbing books I have ever read. This pictorial book -along with a number of TV exposés started the whole de-institutionalization movement of the mentally ill and disabled in the United States (for better or worse).
Eric
May 04, 2016 Eric rated it it was amazing
Great expose on the early treatment of people with intellectual disabilities. The author really calls out the need for change during a time where change wasn't warrantied or desired. The author compared how institutions mistreated patients as almost inhuman and an institution that showed love and compassion to help patients learn and grow.
Samantha
May 19, 2010 Samantha rated it it was amazing
This book helped to start the break down of the US institutions for the intellectually disabled. Beware the pictures are really intense and can be upsetting.
Cathy
Dec 03, 2007 Cathy rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: special educators, historians
wow. that is all one can say.
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“Where ever men go, in heaven, or earth, or hell they find themselves, and that
is all they find.”
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