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SOC101 Introduction to Sociology Assignment 1 Solution Fall 2012

On a cold winter day in 1983, a concerned socialworker paid a call to a farmhouse in rural Pennsylvania and found a five yearold girl hidden in a second floor storage room. The child, whose name was Susan, was stuck into an old chair with her arms tied above her head so that she could not move. She was dressed in only a few filthy garments, and her arms and legs were like matchsticks- so thin and weak that she could not use them. Due todomestic issues Susan was taken to a children’s home in a nearby city shortly after her birth. Susan’s mother was unable to pay for her care, so the child was moved from one’ stranger’s house to another for a period of several months. Finally, not yet six months of age, Susan was brought back tolive with her mother and grandfather.
At this point, Susan’s mother kept her in a room that resembled an attic, providing almost no attention and just enough milk to keep her alive. Because ofthe grandfather’s continuing hostility, Susan stayed in that room, with essentially no human contact, for five years. Susan did not speak, smile, laugh, or even show anger.
Keep in mind this case study and answer the following:
• Susan did not display any social characteristics that are commonly associated with human beings. How do you see the impact of this isolation on personality building of Susan? (5)

Answer:The impact of this isolation on personality building of Susan’s life is that she could not speak, smile, and laugh. Even she could not show her anger against hatred things or situation because she is an isolated girl. Also she couldn’t move because her arms and legs were immobile and at a halt.


• Critically analyze the reasons behind such apathetic condition of Susan. (5)

Answer: The reasons behind such apathetic condition of Susan were domestic issues. Her mother was not caring her. Nor she gives her (Susan) healthy food except milk. Susan was kept in a room that was being similar to garret. Her interaction with the society is negligible and this is a big reason in her isolation because the role of socialization in personality development is very important in one’s life.


• Do you think “Susan was an object rather than a person”? Justify with strong argument.(5)

Answer: I think, Yes “Susan was an object rather than a person” because she did not speak, smile, laugh, or even show anger. She could not use or move her hands, arms and legs because she is very weak.

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