225 A PHENOMENOLOGICAL APPROACH TO DYSLEXIA Erwin W. Straus, Robert G. Aug, and Billie S. Ables Throughout the history of mankind there have been a great many people who did not acquire the skill of reading and writing, yet such ineptitude was never considered due to any abnormality on their part. In our culture, however, at least one group of chil- dren who, in spite of the opportunity to learn to read and write, fail to do so, are considered to be afflicted with some inherent defect, some constitutional abnormality (dyslexia). Thus we en- counter the paradoxical phenomenon of an inherent deficiency manifesting itself in an area of performance which is entirely a cultural invention, an invention in fact made relatively late in the history of man. To sharpen this paradox, the title dyslexia suggests a disturb- ance evident mainly (or even exclusively) as a deficiency in read- ing. Indeed, in regard to many dyslexic children their unpro- ficiency in reading and writing may be the primary if not the only detectable manifestation of a presumably constitutional ab- normality ; many of these children perform well in other areas. It is this paradox which stimulates our interest in
Journal of Phenomenological Psychology – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1971
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