Sort by:

Treating Violent Children with a Therapist's Warmth

Wisconsin's Mendota Treatment Center Offers Violent Youths a Path to Recovery

Katherine Ellison • 12/29/2015

The word "psychopath" distinguishes hard-bitten predators. Research shows a treatment center---run by shrinks, not wardens---has reduced new violent offenses by 50 percent. What accounts for the Mendota Treatment Center’s success? Its founders argue that “prosocial” bonds help deter crime by giving people a stake in society, and thus a reason to work to control themselves. At the center, no one ever calls a kid a psychopath. At most, the center’s therapists will speak of someone as having “psychopathic traits.” Inmates are rigorously referred to as “youth.” Faith in the possibility of redemption is embedded in the language.

Daily Blog

Sympathy For The Devil

Mendota, a Youth-Treatment of Last Resort

Katherine Ellison • 1/1/2013

The word psychopath distinguishes hard-bitten predators. Research shows a treatment center—run by shrinks, not wardens—has reduced new violent offenses by 50 percent. What accounts for the Mendota Treatment Center’s success?

Magazine Article

Family Matters

The White Tuxedo

Katherine Ellison • 9/1/2011

Saturday Night Fever Comes to the Bar Mitzvah

Magazine Article
Page 1 of 1 (3 Items)
Page 1 of 1 (0 Items)

Treating Violent Children with a Therapist's Warmth

Wisconsin's Mendota Treatment Center Offers Violent Youths a Path to Recovery

Katherine Ellison • 12/29/2015

The word "psychopath" distinguishes hard-bitten predators. Research shows a treatment center---run by shrinks, not wardens---has reduced new violent offenses by 50 percent. What accounts for the Mendota Treatment Center’s success? Its founders argue that “prosocial” bonds help deter crime by giving people a stake in society, and thus a reason to work to control themselves. At the center, no one ever calls a kid a psychopath. At most, the center’s therapists will speak of someone as having “psychopathic traits.” Inmates are rigorously referred to as “youth.” Faith in the possibility of redemption is embedded in the language.

Daily Blog
Page 1 of 1

Sympathy For The Devil

Mendota, a Youth-Treatment of Last Resort

Katherine Ellison • 1/1/2013

The word psychopath distinguishes hard-bitten predators. Research shows a treatment center—run by shrinks, not wardens—has reduced new violent offenses by 50 percent. What accounts for the Mendota Treatment Center’s success?

Magazine Article

Family Matters

The White Tuxedo

Katherine Ellison • 9/1/2011

Saturday Night Fever Comes to the Bar Mitzvah

Magazine Article
Page 1 of 1 (2 Items)
Katherine Ellison is a Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and author of five books, most recently Buzz: A Year of Paying Attention.