Sociology has attempted to affect the therapeutic community in two ways. The first of these consists of our criticisma of both theory and practice because of the degree to which these do not fit the known epidemiology of phenomena known variously as mental illness and personal problems. The second attempt to influence has come from the philosophical stance of sociology: recognition of the relativity of realities. Although this paper addresses the second of these sources of influence, a few comments about the former first need to be made because of its effect on the latter.

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