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Notable New     Yorkers
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Mamie ClarkMamie Clark
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Session:         Page of 100

To come in that period. And now we have over 2000 children in a year.

Q:

How did you select these children in the beginning?

Clark:

In the beginning, we just took who came. You know, we had sent out a notice to physicians and to some agencies in the community, and we began to get referrals right away, generally from some of those physicians, and from agency people, so that, although at that time there was a climate of not accepting psychiatry or anything clinical, people did come. People did come.

Q:

What was behind that anti-psychiatric climate?

Clark:

Oh, that was general, all over the country. People didn't want to see psychiatrists because it meant you were crazy.

Q:

Crazy?

Clark:

Yes. That was the climate. It was a stigma, at that time. So that wasn't peculiar to us and our setting. That was a generalized feeling, all over the country.

Q:

As far as blacks sharing this feeling, might they feel even more acutely about it because they are black?

Clark:

They may have. I have no way of knowing that. They may have. They may have. But definitely, certainly in the schools, there was this queer feeling that if you had to go out to a psychiatrist or to clinical services, you were really crazy.



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