Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (M.A.)



First Advisor

Alden E. Noble


During the past months much has been published in periodicals, especially those of a pictorial nature, which discredits institutions established for the care of' the mentally ill throughout the nation. Many articles have been presented which show an intelligent approach, but the majority of these treatments are by those who are basing too much on a very narrow experience. For example, one news magazine recently printed a picture of a mental patient in institutional garb sitting on a bench in one of the poses most characteristic of a catatonic. The caption of the picture seemed to ignore this significant fact and instead to imply that the dejected pose was due to improper treatment. In this paper the author is neither defending the present mental institution, nor is he attempting to throw a "verbal brickbat" at the constructive work which is being done at institutions of this type. He is, rather, submitting an analysis of the prevalence and distribution of certain parasitic Protozoa in a large state hospital in the hope that the findings are of significance not merely in terms of institutional welfare but also in the more general terms of: (1) relationship between mental health and parasitic infections, and (2) regional differences in the incidence of such infections in California.