Parallels In Time V. The Reawakening 1950 - 1980 C. The Quiet Revolution
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Bengt Nirje
Bengt Nirje

Dr. Bengt Nirje, secretary general of the Swedish Parents Association for Mentally Retarded Children, worked with Bank-Mikkelsen and Karl Grunewald in formalizing the principle of normalization. Dr. Nirje described the Normalization Principle as:

  1. A normal rhythm of the day (eating, sleeping);
  2. A normal routine (living, work, school);
  3. A normal rhythm of year (holidays);
  4. Normal developmental experiences;
  5. The chance to make choices;
  6. The right to live heterosexually (not segregated into "men only" or "women only" accommodations);
  7. A normal economic standard;
  8. The right to live, work and play in normal communities.

Denmark and Sweden put the normalization principle into law. Dr. Nirje translated the concept into English and published the concept in the 1969 President's Report on Mental Retardation, where it had a tremendous impact on American professionals.