Are feral children really a myth? A feral child is a human child who has lived isolated from human contact from a very young age, and has no experience of human care, social or loving behavior, and of human language. Some feral children have been confined by people. Others are alleged to have been brought up by animals. Over one hundred cases of supposedly feral children are known. In this essay, I will share with you the similarities, differences, and theories that apply to two feral children.
The first feral child that I’m going to talk about is Anja W. Anja was born to her single mother Angela in 1999. Angela lived on a farm that she had inherited from her parents, but it was too much for her to cope with on her own. Worried that the authorities wouldn’t let her keep her daughter in the run-down conditions of the farm, Angela confined Anja to the house. Anja’s existence was revealed in 2007 and was taken into care of the authorities. Anja has no injuries and was not in ill-health, but her speech, is very limited: she can only say “Hallo” and “Mama”. She currently is in a Children’s hospital and she is unnaturally small and thus appears to be suffering from psychosocial dwarfism. Police are currently deciding whether or not is appropriate to prosecute the mother for neglect.
The Jacksonville Boy is the second and last feral child that I’m going to discuss. One boy of 17 gave the greatest cause for concern. He was found wearing a nappy and appeared to be very developmentally delayed. According to a evaluation at the children’s Crisis Centre, he was suffering from psychosocial dwarfism and starvation. He was estimated to be as tall as a nine year old child and, at 22 kg, the same weight as a six year old. The 17 year old had been in the care of his adoptive parents, Wilson (55) and Brenda Sullivan (48), for 10 years. According to the arrest docket for Mrs. Sullivan, the investigation revealed that the child “had to sleep in a large crib with a wood framed top...
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