Analysis of Dibs in Search of Self

Decent Essays

The book Dibs in Search of Self is a story of a smart yet very unsocial and withdrawn little boy named Dibs. The story, written from Dr. Axline’s point of view, shows how Dibs goes from being completely unable to function in a normal classroom setting with other children to discovering himself through play therapy. Nowhere is the book is Dibs specifically diagnosed or even characterized as being autistic. This is not surprising as autism was not really widely understood or diagnosed until the 1960’s; this book was written in 1964. There are many correlations between this book and some of the theories and topics discussed in Berger’s text. I would like to address some of these correlations now.
Berger says, “Children who developed …show more content…

This is exactly how Dr. Axline is working with Dibs. She is focusing on letting Dibs play, as he sees fit while she observes and minimally participates. Berger also describes programs that stress attachment. Dr. Axline, through gradual progression and participation, slowly builds a rapport and therefore attachment with Dibs. This allows Dibs to become comfortable in his own time, under his own rules. This is important for autistic children who may have issues with trust and attachment.

Axline, V. M. (1964). Dibs in search of self. New York: Ballentine Books.
Berger, K. S. (2009). The developing person: Through childhood and adolescence. New York: Worth

Get Access
Get Access