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Accident ProneA History of Technology, Psychology, and Misfits of the Machine Age$
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John C. Burnham

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780226081175

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: March 2013

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226081199.001.0001

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Consolidation and Development, 1930s-World War II

Consolidation and Development, 1930s-World War II

(p.99) 6. Consolidation and Development, 1930s-World War II
Accident Prone
University of Chicago Press

This chapter explores the idea of accident proneness in the 1930s and in World War II. The idea of accident proneness did not change in the Great Depression/World War II era. Experts refined the idea and the ways in which they could apply it to accident proneness to transportation and factory work. Some idea of the way in which the notion of accident “repeaters” and “proneness” developed before the end of World War II can be suggested by the efforts of Eric Farmer and Karl Marbe, and Jean-Maurice Lahy. Experts continued to explore the phenomenon of accident proneness with a variety of individual tests. Almost all of the applications of the concept of accident proneness turned out to be negative in operation. Psychologists who were working with accident prone drivers and workers often expressed sensitivity to the individual as well as social considerations that came with identifying someone as accident prone.

Keywords:   World War II, Great Depression, transportation, factory work, Eric Farmer, Karl Marbe, Jean-Maurice Lahy

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