Children's perceptions of deviance and disorder.
First-, fourth-, seventh-, and eleventh-grade boys and girls were interviewed on the topic of deviant behavior among their peers. They were also asked to make deviance judgments on 2 story characters whose behaviors exemplified qualities that typically evoke an attribution of psychological disorder on the part of adult judges. 1 story described loss of control and aggression, the other a distorted and paranoid perception of social reality. The pattern of reaction to the stories was consistent with age-related shifts in the basic for deviant status. First graders largely failed to think in terms of group norms. The transition from the middle grades to adolescence was marked by greater emphasis on social consensus--both in psychological perspective and group behavior.
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