The Nixon Experiment

Decent Essays

An orphan himself for six months, Mary Nixon and 10 other orphans were relentlessly belittled for every little imperfection in their speech to test the theory that children become stutterers because of psychological pressure. Nixon now 76 and some of the other test subjects sued the University of Iowa earlier this year over lifelong psychological problems. The university issued an apology after the study was made public in news reports. But the state also asked a judge last month to dismiss the case, claiming that the state is immune from such lawsuits under 1939 law. Many speech experts and therapists agree the experiment was highly unethical by today's standards, but not necessarily by the standards of the day. And they say the case has

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