Essay on The Heartbreaking Case of Genie

1147 Words 5 Pages
Social isolation is one of the most severe punishments known to man. However, for one innocent girl, known as Genie, social isolation was all she knew. Genie was a nickname given to a feral 13-year-old girl who had been a victim of being severely abused and neglected by her parents, in her own house in Arcadia, California. Prior to Genie being discovered in 1970 by Los Angeles child welfare authorities, much of her life consisted of being locked alone in her room strapped to a potty chair or a crib resulting in her being immobile (Reynolds & Fletcher-Janzen, 2004). While Genie was locked away in her room she was never exposed to speech and would get beat for any noises she would make. Her father, Clark Wiley only interacted with her …show more content…
Genie is one of the few cases researchers have that suggest and implies that there is a critical period for acquiring and learning language.
Genie’s unique case of extreme social isolation from noise, stimulation, and interaction during her first 13 years of life as a result of her parents neglect and abuse shocked the nation for years. Genie’s case in itself is completely abnormal to society. However, from Genie’s isolated life and traumatic experiences she was forced to endure while living at her home in California, it really comes to no surprise that she is currently is left with posttraumatic stress disorder and missed the critical period for language. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is categorized under Trauma- and Stress- or- Related Disorders in the newest edition of the DSM-5. Posttraumatic stress disorder, according to the DSM-5 is “triggered from being exposed to actual or threatened death, serious injury, and or sexual violation from either of the following; directly experiencing the traumatic event, witnessing the traumatic event, learning the traumatic event occurred to a close friend or family member, and or experiencing first-hand repeated exposure to the traumatic event” (American Psychiatric Association, 2013). PTSD ultimately results in the individual

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