Childhood in America

Childhood in America

Paula S. Fass
Mary Ann Mason
Copyright Date: 2000
Published by: NYU Press
Pages: 725
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  • Book Info
    Childhood in America
    Book Description:

    Free Teacher's Guide available for Childhood in America!Childhood in America is a unique compendium of sources on American childhood that has many options for classroom adoptions and can be tailored to individual course needs. Because the subject of childhood is both relatively new on campuses and now widely recognized as vital to a range of specialties, the editors have prepared a Teacher's Guide to assist you in making selections appropriate for your courses. Collecting a vast array of selections from past and present- from colonial ministers to Drs. Benjamin Spock and T. Berry Brazelton, from the poems of Anne Bradstreet to the writings of today's young people- Childhood in America brings to light the central issues surrounding American children. Eleven sections on childbirth through adolescence explore a cornucopia of issues, and each section has been carefully selected and introduced by the editors.

    eISBN: 978-0-8147-2862-8
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-xx)
  3. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xxi-xxii)
  4. Introduction: Childhood in America: Past and Present
    (pp. 1-7)
    Paula S. Fass and Mary Ann Mason

    Children are constantly on our minds. They are convenient symbols for our better selves, and we use them to make points, make laws, win elections. But children have also become a necessity in new ways. For many adults in the second half of the twentieth century, the parent-child relationship has replaced marriage as their primary social and emotional connection. Adults can no longer count on husbands and wives for lifelong emotional support and affection as statistics prove the unreliability of marriage. Only with children, many adults are coming to believe, can one hope to find long-term emotional ties. Without children,...

  5. PART 1. Childbirth and Infancy
    • 1 Before the Birth of One of Her Children
      (pp. 11-11)
      Anne Bradstreet
    • 2 Women as Childbearers, 1650–1750
      (pp. 12-15)
      Catherine M. Scholten

      Travelers to America in the colonial period were impressed with the large numbers of children they saw. One visitor remarked that even “Women from other Places who have been long Married and without Children” became “joyfull Mothers” in America, and colonial braggarts proclaimed, “Our Land free, our Men honest, and our Women fruitful.” Benjamin Franklin’s more analytical mind discerned, about 1751, that the American population doubled approximately every twenty years, independent of immigration. Thomas Malthus, who derived his principle of population from observation of the British North American colonies, calculated the same rate of growth and termed it “probably without...

    • 3 Brought to Bed: Childbearing in America
      (pp. 16-19)
      Judith Walzer Leavitt

      The women’s network that developed at least in part through the strong attachments formed across the childbirth bed had long-lasting effects on women’s lives. When women suffered the agonies of watching their friends die, when they had helped a friend recover from a difficult delivery, or when they had participated in a successful birthing, they developed a closeness that often lasted their lifetime. Surviving life’s traumas together made the crises bearable and produced important bonds that continued to sustain other parts of women’s lives. “It was as if,” Marilyn Clohessy wrote, “mothers were members of a sorority and the initiation...

    • 4 Mothers’ Sacred Duty: Breast-Feeding Patterns among Middle- and Upper-Class Women in the Antebellum South
      (pp. 20-22)
      Sally McMillen

      Southern mothers had strong reasons for suckling their newborn, the most common of which was their acceptance of traditional patterns of childrearing. Widespread, almost silent, acceptance of tradition causes a lack of comment by writers of letters and journals, and with few exceptions, which included women who had difficulty lactating, most southern mothers wrote little on the subject. The only comment one might find after reading dozens of letters on infant rearing might be a cryptic reference or the brief comment, “weaned baby from breast.” Mothers were far more eager to discuss their babies’ uncertain state of health and their...

    • 5 Reconstructing Motherhood: The La Leche League in Postwar America
      (pp. 23-28)
      Lynn Y. Weiner

      For almost four decades, the La Leche League—a voluntary association of women—has championed its cause of “good mothering through breastfeeding” in the United States and around the world. Although the league has been largely overlooked in scholarly discussions of women in the postwar era, it represents an important piece in the puzzle of twentieth-century social history. The league’s publication,The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding, has sold some two million copies since 1958, and millions of women have attended league support groups, read league literature, or otherwise encountered league ideology. By the mid-1980s, the league claimed over four thousand...

    • 6 Amazing Births: Medical History in “Miracle” Births
      (pp. 29-31)
      Charles Petit

      It took almost miraculous luck, ferocious determination, and nearly every trick in the book of medical technology.

      After seven miscarriages and a stillbirth, 42-year-old watercolor artist Po-Ying Chern of Moraga rested yesterday in Alta Bates Hospital in Berkeley, mother of twin girls.

      Even her obstetrician, Dr. Robert Neff, can scarcely believe the odyssey of medicine, surgery and sheer willpower it took to get her through her “one last try” for another child beyond the one beautiful, healthy daughter she bore six years ago. Having twins was a bonus miracle.

      He thinks the affair has made minor medical history just from...

    • 7 Woman Gives Birth to Baby Conceived outside the Body
      (pp. 32-34)
      New York Times

      The first authenticated birth of a baby conceived in laboratory glassware and then placed in the uterus of an otherwise infertile mother occurred last night, apparently without complications.

      Reports from Oldham General and District Hospital in Lancashire said the baby, a girl, was delivered by Caesarian section, appeared normal and weighed 5 pounds 12 ounces.

      The birth culminated more than a dozen years of research and experimentation by Dr. Patrick C. Steptoe, a gynecologist, and Dr. Robert G. Edwards, a Cambridge University specialist in reproductive physiology.

      The parents are Mrs. Lesley Brown, 31 years old, and her husband, John, 38,...

    • 8 The Eggs, Embryos, and I
      (pp. 35-37)
      Melissa Moore Bodin

      I have six potential children on ice in a hospital in southern California, and I don’t know what to do with them. For seven years my husband and I suffered with the ’90s affliction—infertility. Our problem started in 1986 when we threw out the diaphragm; the next month I was pregnant. Unfortunately, the embryo didn’t make the whole journey. It started to develop in one of my tubes, and emergency surgery was necessary to remove it. “Don’t worry, this happens, try again,” the experts told us.

      Eight months later, pregnant—again in the fallopian tube. More surgery. After an...

    • 9 The Egg Women
      (pp. 38-40)
      Margaret Talbot

      The bold advertisement in a local magazine made me stop, fold back the page, and look again. “Become an egg donor or surrogate mother,” it urged. “Help an infertile couple become a family!” And then, in smaller print: “There is a special need for Jewish and Asian women.” It was that concluding observation that kept me from turning the page. I have known people who expressed a special need for Jewish and Asian women, but this wasn’t exactly what they meant. And this ovular entreaty soon gave rise to more unusual speculation. If an egg donor were Jewish, would that...

    • 10 Choosing Childlessness
      (pp. 41-43)

      He works long and often unpredictable hours at the office. So does she. No time to cook at the end of the day: they usually meet for dinner at a trendy restaurant or one of them stops to pick up gourmet takeout on the way home. Their car is an expensive, sporty two-seater—just right for weekend getaways. Their white livingroom rug has never known the muddy footprints of little feet. These are not traditional scenes from a marriage; there are no kids around. But more and more couples are painting a new kind of American family portrait—one with...

    • 11 Thoughts on Child Rearing
      (pp. 44-44)
      Anne Bradstreet

      Diuerse children, haue their different natures, some are like flesh wchnothing but salt will keep from putrefaction, some again like tender fruits that are best preserued wthsugar, those parents are wise that can fit their nurture according to their Nature.

      All the works and doings of god are wonderfull, but none more awfull then his great worke of election and Reprobation, when we consider how many good parents haue had bad children, and againe how many bad parents haue had pious children, it should make vs adore the Souerainty of god, who will not be tyed to time...

    • 12 The Use of Reason in Child Rearing
      (pp. 45-48)
      John Locke

      §81. It will perhaps be wondered that I mentionreasoningwith children: and yet I cannot but think that the true way of dealing with them. They understand it as early as they do language; and, if I misobserve not, they love to be treated as rational creatures sooner than is imagined. ’Tis a pride should be cherished in them and, as much as can be, made the great instrument to turn them by.

      But when I talk ofreasoningI do not intend any other but such as is suited to the child’s capacity and apprehension. Nobody can think...

    • 13 Toys
      (pp. 49-51)
      Maria Edgeworth

      Toys which afford trials of dexterity and activity, such as tops, kites, hoops, balls, battledores and shuttlecocks, ninepins, and cup-and-ball are excellent; and we see that they are consequently great and lasting favourites with children; their senses, their understanding, and their passions, are all agreeably interested and exercised by these amusements. They emulate each other; but, as some will probably excel at one game, and some at another, this emulation will not degenerate into envy. There is more danger that this hateful passion should be created in the minds of young competitors at those games, where it is supposed that...

    • 14 The Cry
      (pp. 52-53)
      L. Emmett Holt

      When is crying useful?

      In the newly-born infant the cry expands the lungs, and it is necessary that it should be repeated for a few minutes every day in order to keep them well expanded.

      How much crying is normal for a very young baby?

      From fifteen to thirty minutes a day is not too much.

      What is the nature of this cry?

      It is loud and strong. Infants get red in the face with it; in fact, it is a scream. This is necessary for health. It is the baby’s exercise.

      When is a cry abnormal?

      When it is...

    • 15 Too Much Mother Love
      (pp. 54-55)
      John B. Watson

      Now over-conditioning in love is the rule. Prove it yourself by counting the number of times your child whines and wails “Mother.” All over the house, all day long, the two-year-old, the three-year-old and the four-year-old whine “Mamma, Mamma,” “Mother.” Now these love responses which the mother or father is building in by over conditioning, in spite of what the poet and the novelist may have to say, are not constructive. They do not fight many battles for the child. They do not help it to conquer the difficulties it must meet in its environment. Hence just to the extent...

    • 16 The Mother-Child Dyad Revisited: Perceptions of Mothers and Children in Twentieth-Century Child-Rearing Manuals
      (pp. 56-60)
      Nancy Pottishman Weiss

      Thousands of letters from rural women, from immigrant mothers written in the hand of their young children, from women of urban slums as well as comfortable suburbs share a common quest for help and advice on raising children. Childrearing guides can tell us what prevailing professional opinion offered on the subject. Documents such as mail to the United States Children’s Bureau in response to the child care pamphlet,Infant Care, women’s journals concerning children, and archives of groups like the Baby Hygiene Committee of the American Association of University Women corroborate the evidence we have from the large sales of...

    • 17 Child Science and the Rise of the Experts
      (pp. 61-63)
      Joseph M. Hawes

      The key figure in the development of child science was Lawrence K. Frank, who, when he began his work in the early 1920s, was a young recent graduate in economics from Columbia. He used the money of large foundations to carry out a design that at first emphasized the development of a science of the normal child and then sought to disseminate the findings of this new science throughout the nation as a way of improving children’s lives and thereby ensuring the future health of the nation.

      The program of child science Lawrence K. Frank developed while he was working...

    • 18 The Construction of Reality in the Child
      (pp. 64-66)
      Jean Piaget

      Until the age of three to six months, that is, until the prehension of visual objectives, the child’s main activities, from the point of view of space, merely lead him to analyze the content of sensory images: analysis of forms as a whole, or of figures, positions, and displacements. Each behavior pattern or each class of behavior patterns thus results in the formation of a particular category of perceptual clusters which are more or less stable but are not yet realized in objects and are of a type corresponding to spaces: the gustatory or “buccal” space of Stern, visual space,...

    • 19 Understanding the Infant
      (pp. 67-71)
      Jerome Kagan

      When most Europeans lived their entire lives in the same villages in which they were born, and 40 percent of all children died by their fifth birthday, a deep understanding of the infant was of neither interest nor value, for the adult profile of any child who survived the first few years was determined in large measure by the parents’ economic security and class position. But by the middle of the seventeenth century, both ascent and descent in social status had become a real possibility for a significant proportion of youth whose families had acquired some measure of freedom and...

    • 20 Mothers and Fathers Working and Rearing Children
      (pp. 72-75)
      T. Berry Brazelton

      Can a woman decide to take on and competently carry out two roles at once? I certainly think so, and it seems time for us to face this fact as a national trend. It is important to figure out how it can be done so that our next generation of babies and their parents do not suffer.

      We learn about ourselves as mature people in the process of being responsible for and nurturing a baby. Mothers who work must learn two very different approaches to life. Abraham Zaleznik in a speech given at the Harvard Business School said that these...

  6. PART 2. Boys and Girls
    • 21 In Reference to Her Children, 23 June, 1659
      (pp. 79-81)
      Anne Bradstreet
    • 22 Breeching Little Ffrank
      (pp. 82-82)
      A. North

      Dear Son:

      You cannot beleeve the great concerne that was in the whole family here last Wednesday, it being the day that the taylor was to helpe to dress little ffrank in his breeches in order to the making an everyday suit by it. Never had any bride that was to be drest upon her weding night more handes about her, some the legs, some the armes, the taylor butt’ning, and others putting on the sword, and so many lookers on that had I not a ffinger amongst I could not have seen him. When he was quite drest he...

    • 23 Suits and Frocks
      (pp. 83-86)
      Karin Calvert

      In 1757, Mann Page and his sister Elizabeth posed for the artist John Wollaston at their home in Virginia. As one would expect of a boy of ten, Mann wore a fashionable frock coat, waist coat, and knee breeches; his younger sister wore a stylish silk gown over a pair of stays. Unlike David Mason of an earlier generation, however, Mann did not look exactly like a small version of an adult male in every regard. A grown man of fashion in 1757 powdered his hair, or wore a powdered wig, and swaddled his neck in a long white linen...

    • 24 American Girlhood in the Nineteenth Century
      (pp. 87-89)
      Anne Scott MacLeod

      Any image of prim and proper little girls who imbibed with their mother’s milk a deep concern for the state of their clothing dissolves before the autobiographical accounts. These American girls climbed trees, fell into rain barrels, fished in the horse troughs. “We played I Spy, mumblety-peg, stalked about on forkedstick stilts, skinned up the trees, bent limbs for a teeter, climbed on and jumped off the stable roof,” recalled Sarah Bonebright. With the clarity of hindsight, they recorded years later how they had abused their clothes: “I often climbed trees and tore my clothes,” wrote one, and Anna Clary...

    • 25 Nineteenth-Century Boys’ Literature
      (pp. 90-94)
      Daniel T. Rodgers

      What place children’s tales occupied in the welter of socializing influences that bore on children growing up in industrial America, how they compared in influence with the official homilies of schools and churches or the far more powerful pressures of peers and families, it is impossible to say. Like so many other aspects of nineteenth-and early twentieth-century culture, children’s reading divided along lines of class and respectability. That which was admitted to library shelves in an age when children’s librarians took their censoring responsibilities with immense seriousness was the work of writers whose values belonged to Protestant, middle-class, moralistic America....

    • 26 Briar Rose
      (pp. 95-97)
      The Brothers Grimm

      A long time ago there lived a king and a queen, who said every day, “If only we had a child!” But for a long time they had none.

      It happened once as the Queen was bathing that a frog crept out of the water onto the land and said to her, “Your wish shall be fulfilled. Before a year has passed you shall bring a daughter into the world.”

      The frog’s words came true. The Queen had a little girl who was so beautiful that the King could not contain himself for joy, and he prepared a great feast....

    • 27 Little Women
      (pp. 98-99)
      Louisa May Alcott

      Margaret, the eldest of the four, was sixteen, and very pretty, being plump and fair, with large eyes, plenty of soft, brown hair, a sweet mouth, and white hands, of which she was rather vain. Fifteen-year-old Jo was very tall, thin, and brown, and reminded one of a colt; for she never seemed to know what to do with her long limbs, which were very much in her way. She had a decided mouth, a comical nose, and sharp, grey eyes, which appeared to see everything, and were by turns fierce, funny, or thoughtful. Her long, thick hair was her...

    • 28 Nancy Drew and the Secret of the Old Clock
      (pp. 100-101)
      Carolyn Keene

      With the instinct of a detective who dared not miss a clue, Nancy deliberately moved closer to the bench on which the Topham girls were seated.

      “If thereshouldbe another will, I’m afraid we’d be out of luck.” The words, in Ada’s nasal voice, came clearly to Nancy.

      Isabel’s reply was in so low a tone that the young sleuth could just manage to catch the words, “Well, I, for one, don’t believe Josiah Crowley ever made a later will.” She gave a low laugh. “Mother watched him like a hawk.”

      “Or thought she did,” Isabel retorted. “The old...

    • 29 The Sexual Life of the Child
      (pp. 102-103)
      Sigmund Freud

      Thus we can now define the forms taken by the sexual life of the child before the primacy of the genital zone is reached; this primacy is prepared for in the early infantile period, before the latent period, and is permanently organized from puberty onwards. In this early period a loose sort of organization exists which we shall callpre-genital; for during this phase it is not the genital component-instincts, but thesadisticandanal, which are most prominent. The contrast betweenmasculineandfeminineplays no part as yet; instead of it there is the contrast betweenactiveand...

    • 30 Feminine Psychology
      (pp. 104-107)
      Karen Horney

      The question then is how far analytical psychology also, when its researches have women for their object, is under the spell of this way of thinking, insofar as it has not yet wholly left behind the stage in which frankly and as a matter of course masculine development only was considered. In other words, how far has the evolution of women, as depicted to us today by analysis, been measured by masculine standards and how far therefore does this picture fail to present quite accurately the real nature of women.

      If we look at the matter from this point of...

    • 31 Male and Female: Sex and Temperament
      (pp. 108-109)
      Margaret Mead

      The growing child in any society is confronted then by individuals—adults and adolescents and children—who are classified by his society into two groups, males and females, in terms of their most conspicuous primary sex characters, but who actually show great range and variety both in physique and in behaviour. Because primary sex differences are of such enormous importance, shaping so determinatively the child’s experience of the world through its own body and the responses of others to its sex membership, most children take maleness or femaleness as their first identification of themselves. But once this identification is made,...

    • 32 Infantile Sexuality
      (pp. 110-115)
      Erik H. Erikson

      I will [describe] observations made on a large number of children who were not patients, but the subjects of a developmental study made at the University of California. Neither were they children of play age. Ten, eleven, and twelve years old, they had already been interviewed and observed regularly for a decade, and all discernible aspects of the growth and development of their bodies, their minds, and their personalities had been carefully recorded. When I joined the staff of the study to review their records, we thought it might be interesting to test on this large sample the clinical proposition...

    • 33 Moral Reasoning in Girls and Boys
      (pp. 116-118)
      Carol Gilligan

      Asking different questions that arise from different conceptions of the moral domain, the children arrive at answers that fundamentally diverge, and the arrangement of these answers as successive stages on a scale of increasing moral maturity calibrated by the logic of the boy’s response misses the different truth revealed in the judgment of the girl. To the question, “What does he see that she does not?” Kohlberg’s theory provides a ready response, manifest in the scoring of Jake’s judgments a full stage higher than Amy’s in moral maturity; to the question, “What does she see that he does not?” Kohlberg’s...

    • 34 How Schools Shortchange Girls
      (pp. 119-121)
      American Association of University Women Report

      Despite a narrowing of the “gender gaps” in verbal and mathematical performance, girls are not doing as well as boys in our nation’s schools. The physical sciences is one critical area in which girls continue to trail behind boys. More discouraging still, even girls who take the same mathematics and science courses as boys and perform equally well on tests are much less apt to pursue scientific or technological careers than are their male classmates. This is a “gender gap” our nation can no longer afford to ignore.

      Research on sex, race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status suggests that girls of...

  7. PART 3. Adolescence and Youth
    • 35 Courtship and Gender Differences
      (pp. 125-128)
      Ellen K. Rothman

      When Mary Ballard married William Ross, she had behind her two years at a school dedicated, in the words of its founders, to “drawing forth the mental energies,” rather than “ornamenting the surface,” of its students. The Western Female Seminary was one of dozens of institutions founded in the second quarter of the nineteenth century to give girls some of the same intellectual discipline available to boys in their academies and colleges. And yet even as the female seminaries moved closer to the curriculum of their male models, with physiology and astronomy supplanting embroidery and painting, a fundamental difference persisted....

    • 36 Children’s Voices from the Civil War
      (pp. 129-131)
      Emmy E. Werner

      When word of Fort Sumter’s fall reached President Abraham Lincoln in Washington, D.C., he issued a call to the governors of the states and territories to furnish seventy-five thousand volunteers to put down the insurrection. From Maine to Minnesota, from Illinois to New York, men rushed to arms. The Union held that a recruit had to be at least eighteen years old, but thousands of boys in their early and middle teens managed to slip into the army as drummers, fifers, or buglers and enlisted for duty in the infantry and cavalry. Their enthusiasm was contagious.

      In Michigan theDetroit...

    • 37 Adolescence in Historical Perspective
      (pp. 132-138)
      John Demos and Virginia Demos

      The idea of adolescence is today one of our most widely held and deeply imbedded assumptions about the process of human development. Indeed most of us treat it not as an idea but as afact. Its impact is clear in countless areas of everyday life—in newspapers, magazines, and books; in various forms of popular entertainment; in styles of dress and of language. Its causes and meaning have been repeatedly analyzed in the work of psychologists and sociologists. Its effects are endlessly discussed by teachers, social workers, officers of the law, and parents everywhere.

      Yet all of this has...

    • 38 The Physiology and Psychology of Adolescence
      (pp. 139-141)
      G. Stanley Hall

      As we know more of adolescence, it will probably be apparent that many, if not indeed most of its minor disorders are due to disproportionate development. If increase in height is too rapid and excessive, not only growing pains in the limbs due to failure of the muscles to developpari passuwith the bones, but venous disturbances, particularly varicosities in the legs, now so common, and even aortic disorders may be caused, to say nothing of curvatures and torsions, because young people become self-conscious and perhaps ashamed of their sudden height, and the fully upright posture is hard to...

    • 39 Compulsory Schooling and Parent-Adolescent Relations
      (pp. 142-145)
      Stephen A. Lassonde

      One of the quiet cultural transformations of the twentieth century in the United States has been the widespread consensus over the meaningfulness of age gradations among children and youths….

      Who could have predicted at the dawn of the twentieth century the swift success of the “adolescent idea” and the subdivision of stages in growing up that has occurred since? Certainly the rise of the expert and the medicalization of “deviance” have contributed significantly to the broad acceptance of age gradations and the developmental perspective. But schooling, the most pervasive of all modern institutions has had the greatest influence on the...

    • 40 The Natural History of the Gang
      (pp. 146-148)
      Frederic M. Thrasher

      The beginnings of the gang can best be studied in the slums of the city where an inordinately large number of children are crowded into a limited area. On a warm summer evening children fairly swarm over areaways and sidewalks, vacant lots and rubbish dumps, streets and alleys. The buzzing chatter and constant motion remind one of insects which hover in a swarm, yet ceaselessly dart hither and thither within the animated mass. This endless activity has a tremendous fascination, even for the casual visitor to the district, and it would be a marvel indeed if any healthy boy could...

    • 41 Adolescent Girls in Samoa and America
      (pp. 149-152)
      Margaret Mead

      For many chapters we have followed the lives of Samoan girls, watched them change from babies to baby-tenders, learn to make the oven and weave fine mats, forsake the life of the gang to become more active members of the household, defer marriage through as many years of casual love-making as possible, finally marry and settle down to rearing children who will repeat the same cycle. As far as our material permitted, an experiment has been conducted to discover what the process of development was like in a society very different from our own. Because the length of human life...

    • 42 Identity, Youth, and Crisis
      (pp. 153-160)
      Erik H. Erikson

      Among the indispensable co-ordinates of identity is that of the life cycle, for we assume that not until adolescence does the individual develop the prerequisites in physiological growth, mental maturation, and social responsibility to experience and pass through the crisis of identity. We may, in fact, speak of the identity crisis as the psychosocial aspect of adolescing. Nor could this stage be passed without identity having found a form which will decisively determine later life.

      Let us, once more, start out from Freud’s far-reaching discovery that neurotic conflict is not very different in content from the “normative” conflicts which every...

    • 43 Anorexia Nervosa in the 1980s
      (pp. 161-165)
      Joan Jacobs Brumberg

      While boys are developing muscles as a consequence of biological development, girls experience an increase in adiposity, particularly in the breasts and hips. This increased fat is a necessity for the menstrual cycle. In our fat-phobic society, where female self-worth is so intimately tied to a slim figure, these biological differences have critical and distinctive emotional consequences.

      For adolescent boys, growing larger is frequently a source of pleasure and power; for girls, an increase in size is often confusing, awkward, and stressful. In her influential treatiseThe Second Sex(1949), Simone de Beauvoir noted the normal adolescent girl’s fear of...

    • 44 Reviving Ophelia: Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls
      (pp. 166-168)
      Mary Pipher

      There are more magazines for girls now, but they are relatively unchanged in the thirty years since I bought my copies ofTeen. The content for girls is makeup, acne products, fashion, thinness and attracting boys. Some of the headlines could be the same: true colors quiz, get the look that gets boys, ten commandments of hair, the best places to meet available men and ten ways to trim down. Some headlines are updated to pay lip service to the themes of the 1990s: two models chill out at oxford university in season’s greatest gray clothes or eco-inspired looks for...

    • 45 Families Started by Teenagers
      (pp. 169-176)
      Jane Mauldon

      Families in the United States are more diverse than they have ever been, and almost every type of family has its proponents—with the exception of families started by teenagers. In late-twentieth-century America, teenagers are not supposed to have children. “Adolescent parenthood”—the phrase only entered the lexicon of social problems in the early 1970s—is a problem almost by definition. Adolescents do not have the rights and responsibilities of adults; parenthood is quintessentially an adult role; ergo, adolescents should not be parents.

      But many are. Nearly one million teenagers become pregnant each year in the United States and about...

    • 46 Why the Young Kill
      (pp. 177-180)
      Sharon Begley

      The temptation, of course, is to seize on one cause, one single explanation for Littleton, and West Paducah, and Jonesboro and all the other towns that have acquired iconic status the way “Dallas” or “Munich” did for earlier generations. Surely the cause is having access to guns. Or being a victim of abuse at the hands of parents or peers. Or being immersed in a culture that glorifies violence and revenge. But there isn’t one cause. And while that makes stemming the tide of youth violence a lot harder, it also makes it less of an unfathomable mystery. Science has...

    • 47 Petting
      (pp. 181-182)
      F. Scott Fitzgerald

      On the Triangle trip Amory had come into constant contact with that great current American phenomenon, the “petting party.”

      None of the Victorian mothers—and most of the mothers were Victorian—had any idea how casually their daughters were accustomed to be kissed. “Servant-girls are that way,” says Mrs. Huston-Carmelite to her popular daughter. “They are kissed first and proposed to afterward.”

      But the Popular Daughter becomes engaged every six months between sixteen and twenty-two, when she arranges a match with young Hambell, of Cambell & Hambell, who fatuously considers himself her first love, and between engagements the P. D. (she...

    • 48 The Member of the Wedding
      (pp. 183-186)
      Carson McCullers

      She stood before the mirror and she was afraid. It was the summer of fear, for Frankie, and there was one fear that could be figured in arithmetic with paper and a pencil at the table. This August she was twelve and five-sixths years old. She was five feet five and three quarter inches tall, and she wore a number seven shoe. In the past year she had grown four inches, or at least that was what she judged. Already the hateful little summer children hollered to her: “Is it cold up there?” And the comments of grown people made...

    • 49 Manchild in the Promised Land
      (pp. 187-190)
      Claude Brown

      When I went uptown now, I always had a definite purpose. I was going up to see Pimp to try and get him interested in something. I would take him out to the Flatbush section of Brooklyn and to Brighton, and we’d just walk. We’d walk around in Washington Heights. Sometimes on Sundays I liked to take him bike riding with me and show him other parts of New York City, hoping he could really get to see something outside of Harlem.

      I was kind of worried about him now, because he was at that age, fifteen, where it was...

    • 50 Becoming a Man: Half a Life Story
      (pp. 191-195)
      Paul Monette

      Our two California roommates arrived in tandem: Sean and Jake, respectively a rock climber from Marin and a tennis jock from Santa Barbara. Outsize figures from the moment they walked through the door. They’d been buddies at the Trimble School—best of the West, old California gold, where every boy was required to keep a horse because it built character. Jake was third generation Trimble himself, grandson of the founding gentleman cowboy. He and Sean were smart as anybody from Andover, but not so polished, and proud of that. As to the mores and climate of Yale, everything struck them...

    • 51 Adulthood? Later, Dude!
      (pp. 196-199)
      D. James Romero

      Adulthood has become a dirty word in America. No one, it seems, wants to live the Cleaver life. Some would just as soon be in prison as be beholden to family, job and community. They see it as the antithesis of freedom. Others dream of suburbia and strollers, but simply don’t have the means.

      That much is clear on a gleaming day along the bustling row of bars, restaurants and boutiques that line Pasadena’s Colorado Boulevard.

      “I’m basically still in the process of growing up,” says waiter Domenico Fragomeno, 24, as he stands in the doorway of La Dolce Vita....

  8. PART 4. Discipline
    • 52 Family Life in Plymouth Colony
      (pp. 203-205)
      John Demos

      Egalitarianism formed no part of seventeenth-century assumptions about the proper relationship of parents and children. But at Plymouth this relationship involved a set ofreciprocalobligations.

      From the standpoint of the child, the Biblical commandment to “Honor thy father and mother” was fundamental—and the force of law stood behind it. The relevant statute directed that “If any Childe or Children above sixteen years old, and of competent Understanding, shall Curse or Smite their Natural Father or Mother; he or they shall be put to Death, unless it can be sufficiently testified that the Parents have been very Unchristianly negligent...

    • 53 Protecting Children from Abusing Masters
      (pp. 206-207)
      Colonial Documents

      We, whose names are underwritten, being appointed a jury by Master John Alden to view the dead body of John Walker, servant to Robert Latham, of this town, and to find the cause how he came to his untimely end:

      We, upon due search and examination, do find that the body of John Walker was blackish and blue, and the skin broken in divers places from the middle to the hair of his head, viz., all his back with stripes given him by his master, Robert Latham, as Robert himself did testify; and also we found a bruise of his...

    • 54 Inculcating Self-Discipline
      (pp. 208-210)
      John Locke

      §103. I told you before that children lovelibertyand therefore they should be brought to do the things [that] are fit for them without feeling any restraint laid upon them. I now tell you they love something more: and that isdominion; and this is the first origin of most vicious habits that are ordinary and natural. This love ofpowerand dominion shows itself very early, and that in these two things:

      §104. 1. We see children (as soon almost as they are born, I am sure long before they can speak) cry, grow peevish, sullen, and out...

    • 55 Introducing Children into the Social Order
      (pp. 211-215)
      Carl N. Degler

      A time-honored way of raising children has been to coerce them physically, thereby inculcating not only proper behavior but perhaps proper thoughts as well. And just because the ends were so important, physical disciplining occurred early in the life of the child, not only prior to the 19th century but in the years after 1800 as well. The immediate purpose of this early discipline was to subdue the child’s self-assertiveness. Until that was done, it was then believed, little true education or spiritual growth could be expected. Historian Lawrence Stone tells us that in early 17th-century England, schools and parents...

    • 56 A Milder and Warmer Family Government
      (pp. 216-217)
      Horace Bushnell

      There is, then, to be such a thing as penalty, or punishment, in the government of the house. And here again is a place where large consideration is requisite. First of all, it should be threatened as seldom as possible, and next as seldom executed as possible. It is a most wretched and coarse barbarity that turns the house into a penitentiary, or house of correction. Where the management is right in other respects, punishment will be very seldom needed. And those parents who make it a point of fidelity, that they keep the flail of chastisement always a going,...

    • 57 Learning Self-Control
      (pp. 218-220)
      Louisa May Alcott

      “Laurie did it all; I only let her go. Mother, if sheshoulddie, it would be my fault;” and Jo dropped down beside the bed, in a passion of penitent tears, telling all that had happened, bitterly condemning her hardness of heart, and sobbing out her gratitude for being spared the heavy punishment which might have come upon her.

      “It’s my dreadful temper! I try to cure it; I think I have, and then it breaks out worse than ever. O mother, what shall I do? what shall I do?” cried poor Jo, in despair.

      “Watch and pray, dear;...

    • 58 The Life of a Slave Child
      (pp. 221-222)
      James W. C. Pennington

      My feelings are always outraged when I hear [ministers] speak of “kind masters,”—“Christian masters,”—“the mildest form of slavery,”—“well fed and clothed slaves,” as extenuations of slavery; I am satisfied they either mean to pervert the truth, or they do not know what they say. The being of slavery, its soul and body, lives and moves in the chattel principle, the property principle, the bill of sale principle; the cart-whip, starvation, and nakedness, are its inevitable consequences to a greater or less extent, warring with the dispositions of men….

      Another evil of slavery [is] … the want of...

    • 59 Managing Young Children
      (pp. 223-226)
      Benjamin Spock

      The only sensible answer is that many good parents feel that they have to punish once in a while. But other parents find that they can successfully manage their children without ever having to punish. A lot depends on how the parents were brought up. If they were punished occasionally for good cause, they naturally expect to have to punish in similar situations. And if they were kept in line by positive guidance alone, they are apt to find that they can do the same with their children.

      On the other hand, there are also a fair number of poorly...

    • 60 Corporal Punishment
      (pp. 227-228)
      Middle District, North Carolina Court

      Craven, Circuit Judge.

      This three-judge court was convened to consider the claims of Russell Carl Baker and his mother that their constitutional rights were violated when Russell Carl was corporally punished by his teacher over his mother’s objections and without procedural due process. Russell Carl, a sixth-grader, was paddled on December 6, 1973, for allegedly violating his teacher’s announced rule against throwing kickballs except during designated play periods. Mrs. Baker had previously requested of Russell Carl’s principal and certain teachers, that Russell Carl not be corporally punished, because she opposed it on principle. Nevertheless, shortly after his alleged misconduct her...

    • 61 Cracking Down on Kids
      (pp. 229-233)
      Annette Fuentes

      When Kipland Kinkel, Mitchell Johnson and Andrew Golden reportedly unloaded mini arsenals of guns at their classmates, they fulfilled the worst fears about young people that now dominate the nation’s adult consciousness. Kinkel, 15, of Springfield, Oregon, allegedly is responsible for the deaths of two students as a result of an incident on May 21, as well as for the deaths of his parents. Johnson, 13, and Golden, 11, were charged in connection with the March 24 deaths of four students and a teacher in Jonesboro, Arkansas. All were instantly transformed from average American boys, perhaps a bit on the...

  9. PART 5. Working Children
    • 62 Fathers/Masters: Children/Servants
      (pp. 237-240)
      Mary Ann Mason

      A very large proportion of children in the colonial era did not spend their whole childhood under the custody and control of their own parents or stepparents. These children were put under the custody and control of masters (and sometimes mistresses), to whom they were indentured. “Binding out,” “putting out,” or “apprenticing” were all variations on the well-established English custom of placing children in the home of a master who was obliged to provide ordinary sustenance and some training in return for services. This training could be as specific as teaching a skilled craft or it could be as general...

    • 63 Children’s Involuntary Labor
      (pp. 241-243)
      Colonial Documents

      The Treasurer, Council, and Company of Virginia assembled in their great and general Court the 17th of November 1619 have taken into consideration the continual great forwardness of his honorable City [London] in advancing the plantation of Virginia and particularly in furnishing out one hundred children this last year, which by the goodness of God there safely arrived (save such as died in the way), and are well pleased we doubt not for their benefit, for which your bountiful assistance, we in the name of the whole plantation do yield unto you due and deserved thanks.

      And forasmuch as we...

    • 64 Apprentices, Servants, and Child Labor
      (pp. 244-247)
      Colonial Documents

      This indenture made the 6th day of June in the year of our Lord Christ 1659, witnesseth, that Bartholomew Clarke the son of John Clarke of the City of Canterbury, sadler, of his own liking and with the consent of Francis Plumer of the City of Canterbury, brewer, hath put himself apprentice unto Edward Rowzie of Virginia, planter, as an apprentice with him to dwell from the day of the date above mentioned unto the full term of four years from thence next ensuing fully to be complete and ended, all which said term the said Bartholomew Clarke well and...

    • 65 Children and Manufactures
      (pp. 248-248)
      Alexander Hamilton

      As to the additional employment of classes of the community not originally engaged in the particular business, this is not among the least valuable of the means by which manufacturing institutions contribute to augment the general stock of industry and production. In places where those institutions prevail, besides the persons regularly engaged in them, they afford occasional and extra employment to industrious individuals and families who are willing to devote the leisure resulting from the intermissions of their ordinary pursuits to collateral labors, as a resource for multiplying their acquisitions or their enjoyments. The husbandman himself experiences a new source...

    • 66 Choosing a Trade
      (pp. 249-250)
      Benjamin Franklin

      I continu’d thus employ’d in my Father’s Business for two Years, that is till I was 12 Years old; and my Brother John, who was bred to that Business, having left my Father, married and set up for himself at Rhode Island. There was all Appearance that I was destin’d to supply his Place and be a Tallow Chandler. But my Dislike to the Trade continuing, my Father was under Apprehensions that if he did not find one for me more agreeable, I should break away and get to Sea, as his Son Josiah had done to his great Vexation....

    • 67 Children in the Mills
      (pp. 251-252)
      August Kohn

      There has been very much more interest shown by the outside world in the matter of the employment of children in the cotton mills—more indeed than any other phase of cotton mill life. The employment of children has always been a matter of concern to the public at large. It is probably very well that there is so much interest in this phase of mill life. Most of those who have undertaken to present the matter of child labor have done so from the sensational or sentimental view point, and very many of those who have undertaken to arouse...

    • 68 Children at Work in the City
      (pp. 253-255)
      David Nasaw

      The children who earned their money as street traders peddled whatever they could buy cheaply, fit into their pockets or the canvas bag slung over their shoulders, and sell for a profit. Bessie Turner Kriesberg, a Russian émigré whose oral history translated from the Yiddish is found in the YIVO archives, was astounded on her arrival in Chicago by the number of boys on the streets—and the variety of items they sold. “She enjoyed watching the young boys acting as businessmen. They were shouting out the merchandise they had for sale. One was selling newspapers, one chewing gum, one...

    • 69 A Child Worker in the Garment Industry
      (pp. 256-259)
      Rose Cohen

      On the following day father came home at noon and took me along to the shop where he worked. We climbed the dark, narrow stairs of a tenement house on Monroe Street and came into a bright room filled with noise. I saw about five or six men and a girl. The men turned and looked at us when we passed. I felt scared and stumbled. One man asked in surprise:

      “Avrom, is this your daughter? Why, she is only a little girl!”

      My father smiled. “Yes,” he said, “but wait till you see her sew.”

      He placed me on...

    • 70 The Changing Social Value of Children
      (pp. 260-262)
      Viviana A. Zelizer

      The 1900 U.S. Census reported that one child out of every six between the ages of ten and fifteen was gainfully employed. It was an undercount: The total figure of 1,750,178 excluded many child laborers under ten as well as the children “helping out” their parents in sweatshops and on farms, before or after school hours. Ten years later, the official estimate of working children reached 1,990,225. But by 1930, the economic participation of children had dwindled dramatically. Census figures registered 667,118 laborers under fifteen years of age. The decline was particularly marked among younger children. Between 1900 and 1930,...

    • 71 Coming of Age in Mississippi
      (pp. 263-264)
      Anne Moody

      Times really got hard at home. Mama was trying to buy clothes for the three of us, feed us, and keep us in school. She just couldn’t do it on five dollars a week. Food began to get even scarcer. Mama discovered that the old white lady living in the big white two-story house on the hill sold clabber milk to Negroes for twenty-five cents a gallon. Mama started buying two or three gallons a week from her. Now we ate milk-and-bread all the time (milk with crumbled cornbread in it). Then Mrs. Johnson started giving her the dinner leftovers...

    • 72 Children and the New Deal
      (pp. 265-268)
      Paula S. Fass

      The New Deal entered the educational arena through the back door, as it were, not as an agent of education, but as a dispenser of relief. Throughout the thirties, the Roosevelt administration never overtly questioned the local basis of educational policy or the autonomy of the states in decisions about schooling and did not set out to establish a federal responsibility for education. Instead, in the course of its relief efforts, the New Deal developed educational programs and facilities that paralleled those of traditional educational institutions. Those programs were federally administered and controlled but did not technically interfere with or...

    • 73 American Children in the Second World War
      (pp. 269-271)
      Robert William Kirk

      After Pearl Harbor, material and psychological necessities impelled government authorities, industrialists, educators, parents, adult leaders of children’s groups, and others to add their voices to that of President Roosevelt to ask youngsters to participate in scrap drives. Psychological factors include improving character through practicing diligence, enhancing patriotism, developing a sense of purpose in children in order to reach a common goal, preventing their delinquency, and lessening children’s fears and insecurity. Material needs refer, of course, to war industries’ critical shortage of scrap rubber, metal, paper, and other items.

      Concerned adults believed that children’s participation in scrap drives would nurture patriotism...

    • 74 Child Labor and the Law
      (pp. 272-274)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Justice Rutledge delivered the opinion of the Court.

      The case brings for review another episode in the conflict between Jehovah’s Witnesses and state authority. This time Sarah Prince appeals from convictions for violating Massachusetts’ child labor laws, by acts said to be a rightful exercise of her religious convictions.

      When the offenses were committed she was the aunt and custodian of Betty M. Simmons, a girl nine years of age. Originally there were three separate complaints. They were, shortly, for (1) refusal to disclose Betty’s identity and age to a public officer whose duty was to enforce the statutes;...

    • 75 Working Children in Contemporary Chinatown
      (pp. 275-279)
      Samuel G. Freedman

      See Wai entered P.S. 130 in September 1980, equipped with his parents’ advice to dress drably and say little. He was asang sau, “one without experience,” and he would do best to listen and obey. But even wordlessly, See Wai unsettled the school, for he was an eleven-year-old with fewer than two years of formal education. Academically, he belonged in the second grade, socially in the sixth. The school compromised by placing him in a fifth-grade class for English as a Second Language, and there he learned the alphabet and the family members and the different types of transportation....

  10. PART 6. Learning
    • 76 Education and the Concept of Childhood
      (pp. 283-285)
      Philippe Ariès

      In the Middle Ages, at the beginning of modern times, and for a long time after that in the lower classes, children were mixed with adults as soon as they were considered capable of doing without their mothers or nannies, not long after a tardy weaning (in other words, at about the age of seven). They immediately went straight into the great community of men, sharing in the work and play of their companions, old and young alike. The movement of collective life carried along in a single torrent all ages and classes, leaving nobody any time for solitude and...

    • 77 Family Instruction in Early Massachusetts
      (pp. 286-287)
      Colonial Document

      Forasmuch as the good education of children is of Singular behoof and benefit to any commonwealth, and whereas many parents and masters are too indulgent and negligent of their duty in that kind: It is therefore ordered that the selectmen of every town, in the several precincts and quarters where they dwell, shall have a vigilant eye over their brethren and neighbors to see, first, that none of them shall suffer so much barbarism in any of their families as not to endeavor to teach by themselves, or others, their children and apprentices so much learning as may enable them...

    • 78 A Puritan Education
      (pp. 288-291)
      Edmund S. Morgan

      A parent had to provide for his children, because they were unable to provide for themselves. If he was ever to free himself of the obligation, he must see to it that they knew how to earn a living. “If you’re careful to bring them up diligently in proper business,” Benjamin Wadsworth advised parents, “you take a good method for their comfortable subsistence in this World (and for their being serviceable in their Generation) you do better for them, then if you should bring them up idly, and yet leave them great Estates.” According to law every father had to...

    • 79 Émile
      (pp. 292-293)
      Jean-Jacques Rousseau

      Never tell the child what he cannot understand: no descriptions, no eloquence, no figures of speech, no poetry. The time has not come for feeling or taste. Continue to be clear and cold; the time will come only too soon when you must adopt another tone.

      Brought up in the spirit of our maxims, accustomed to make his own tools and not to appeal to others until he has tried and failed, he will examine everything he sees carefully and in silence. He thinks rather than questions. Be content, therefore, to show him things at a fit season; then, when...

    • 80 Moral Education for Citizenship
      (pp. 294-295)
      Carl F. Kaestle

      Morality was the most important goal of common education, and it promised many benefits. Among those most often cited were good work habits, deference to adults, restraint from vicious and debilitating habits, a reduction of crime, and the protection of property. Orville Taylor’s popularDistrict Schoolemphasized that teachers had a heavy responsibility to parents and to the future of society in shaping the character of “pliable, susceptible” children. “Society expects that teachers will make children and youth social, honorable, and benevolent members.” In another widely read teacher’s manual, Alonzo Potter urged teachers to “inspire the young with deep reverence...

    • 81 The Education of Mary Anna Longstreth
      (pp. 296-297)
      Harvey J. Graff

      Mary Anna Longstreth’s memoir introduces us to middle-class experience as it was forming. Born to Philadelphia Quaker parents, Mary Anna (1811–1884) was “an infant greatly desired and joyfully welcomed.” Hers were “modern” parents, and the infant responded to their love. In perfect health, she “was never heard to cry.” Concern about precocity being as yet uncommon, Mary Anna began school at the age of two and a half when her sister was born.

      At first she went to a dame school. “Actual study” began at age five. Mary Anna attended a school run by the Misses Cox for five...

    • 82 Tom Sawyer’s Examination Day
      (pp. 298-302)
      Mark Twain

      Vacation was approaching. The schoolmaster, always severe, grew severer and more exacting than ever, for he wanted the school to make a good showing on “Examination” day. His rod and his ferule were seldom idle now—at least among the smaller pupils. Only the biggest boys, and young ladies of eighteen and twenty, escaped lashing. Mr. Dobbins’s lashings were very vigorous ones, too; for although he carried, under his wig, a perfectly bald and shiny head, he had only reached middle age and there was no sign of feebleness in his muscle. As the great day approached, all the tyranny...

    • 83 The Child and the Curriculum
      (pp. 303-306)
      John Dewey

      What, then, is the problem? It is just to get rid of the prejudicial notion that there is some gap in kind (as distinct from degree) between the child’s experience and the various forms of subject-matter that make up the course of study. From the side of the child, it is a question of seeing how his experience already contains within itself elements—facts and truths—of just the same sort as those entering into the formulated study; and, what is of more importance, of how it contains within itself the attitudes, the motives, and the interests which have operated...

    • 84 Testing the IQ of Children
      (pp. 307-312)
      Paula S. Fass

      Progressive social reformers hoped to use education to revitalize democracy through the reconstruction of the elements of individual political responsibility. To this faith in democratic renewal through education, progressives added a new faith—in science, technical expertise, and the symbolic power of numbers. Amidst the disorders of the late nineteenth-century and early twentieth-century world, science and numbers seemed to promise just that fundamental knowledge and access to order that would result in control. Science was more than a form of data-collecting; it would also provide a method for solving social problems and making social policy. In the early twentieth century,...

    • 85 For the Love of Books
      (pp. 313-317)
      Richard Wright

      One morning I arrived early at work and went into the bank lobby where the Negro porter was mopping. I stood at a counter and picked up the MemphisCommercial Appealand began my free reading of the press. I came finally to the editorial page and saw an article dealing with one H. L. Mencken. I knew by hearsay that he was the editor of theAmerican Mercury, but aside from that I knew nothing about him. The article was a furious denunciation of Mencken, concluding with one, hot, short sentence: Mencken is a fool.

      I wondered what on...

    • 86 School Desegregation
      (pp. 318-320)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Chief Justice Warren delivered the opinion of the Court.

      We come [t]o the question presented: Does segregation of children in public schools solely on the basis of race, even though the physical facilities and other “tangible” factors may be equal, deprive the children of the minority group of equal educational opportunities? We believe that it does.

      [T]o separate them from others of similar age and qualifications solely because of their race generates a feeling of inferiority as to their status in the community that may affect their hearts and minds in a way unlikely ever to be undone. The...

    • 87 Education in the Post-Sputnik Era
      (pp. 321-325)
      Diane Ravitch

      Unlike higher education, where the mood was one of confidence and optimism as the 1960s began, America’s elementary and secondary schools were struggling to readjust to the new demands of the post-Sputnik era. The Soviet launch of the world’s first artificial satellite on October 4, 1957, promptly ended the debate that had raged for several years about the quality of American education. Those who had argued since the late 1940s that American schools were not rigorous enough and that life adjustment education had cheapened intellectual values felt vindicated, and, as one historian later wrote, “a shocked and humbled nation embarked...

    • 88 Children of Crisis
      (pp. 326-330)
      Robert Coles

      Amid the talk we hear these days about “culturally disadvantaged” Negro children, I think we tend to overlook the fact that Negroes—not only those from the skimpy Negro middle class—have had a widespread interest in education, though to be sure it has necessarily been education of a special kind. Negro colleges are scattered all over the South. Negro seminaries seem to be everywhere. Negro boys have aimed for teaching or the ministry as commonly as white boys have hoped to become lawyers, doctors or businessmen. By Northern white standards many of the schools and seminaries are weak indeed....

    • 89 Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez
      (pp. 331-332)
      Richard Rodriguez

      At first, it seemed a kind of game. After dinner each night, the family gathered to practice “our” English. (It was still theninglés, a language foreign to us, so we felt drawn as strangers to it.) Laughing, we would try to define words we could not pronounce. We played with strange English sounds, often over-anglicizing our pronunciations. And we filled the smiling gaps of our sentences with familiar Spanish sounds. But that was cheating, somebody shouted. Everyone laughed. In school, meanwhile, like my brother and sister, I was required to attend a daily tutoring session. I needed a full...

    • 90 The Quest for Clarity
      (pp. 333-336)
      Jerome S. Bruner

      What the school is. The school is an entry into the life of the mind. It is, to be sure, life itself and not merely a preparation for living. But it is a special form of living, one carefully devised for making the most of those plastic years that characterize the development ofhomo sapiensand distinguish our species from all others. School should provide more than a continuity with the broader community or with everyday experience. It is primarily the special community where one experiences discovery by the use of intelligence, where one leaps into new and unimagined realms...

    • 91 Children and the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
      (pp. 337-338)
      Albert Shanker

      Writing laws is not an exact science. No matter how carefully crafted a piece of legislation is, it can have design flaws—gray areas or big loopholes—which lead to disputes, court cases and, often, decisions that obscure or pervert its intent. This is what’s happened to the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA). IDEA defines services for disabled children, a group whose educational needs used to be largely ignored, but there have been serious problems with a number of its important provisions….

      IDEA requires that youngsters with disabilities get a “free and appropriate public education in the least...

    • 92 The Theory of Multiple Intelligences
      (pp. 339-342)
      Howard Gardner

      I believe that we should get away altogether from tests and correlations among tests, and look instead at more naturalistic sources of information about how peoples around the world develop skills important to their way of life. Think, for example, of sailors in the South Seas, who find their way around hundreds, or even thousands, of islands by looking at the constellations of stars in the sky, feeling the way a boat passes over the water, and noticing a few scattered landmarks. A word for intelligence in a society of these sailors would probably refer to that kind of navigational...

    • 93 Mother’s Little Helper: Ritalin and Attention Deficit Disorder
      (pp. 343-345)
      LynNell Hancock, Pat Wingert, Mary Hager, Claudia Kalb, Karen Springen and Dante Chinni

      It is another medication morning at Winnebago Elementary School in the middle-class Chicago suburb of Bloomingdale. Three pings sound precisely over the intercom at 11:45 a.m. Principal Mark Wagener opens a locked file cabinet and withdraws a giant Tupperware container filled with plastic prescription vials. Nearly a dozen students scramble to the office for their Ritalin, a drug that calms the agitated by stimulating the brain. These children—all ages, mostly boys—have been diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, a complex neurological impairment that takes the brakes off brains and derails concentration. The school nurse places the pills, one by one,...

  11. PART 7. Children without Parents
    • 94 Kidnapping and White Servitude
      (pp. 349-351)
      Abbot Emerson Smith

      Meanwhile the government made its first move to check the practice [kidnapping]. An ordinance of Parliament, in 1645, charged all officers and ministers of justice “to be very diligent in apprehending all such persons as are faulty in this kind, either in stealing, selling, buying, inveigling, purloyning, conveying, or receiving Children so stolne, and to keep them in safe imprisonment, till they may be brought to severe and exemplary punishment.” The marshals of the Admiralty and of the Cinque Ports were ordered to search all vessels in the river and at the Downs for such children. A further precaution was...

    • 95 Orphans’ Court
      (pp. 352-354)
      Lois Green Carr

      The orphans’ courts of Maryland and Virginia developed during the seventeenth century in response to a critical social need. A man who immigrated to the Chesapeake in the 1600s, regardless of his social class, had a short time to live compared even to Third World inhabitants today. He was unlikely to see any of his children come of age. A child had perhaps one chance in two of spending part of his childhood in the household of a stepfather or other guardian. Legal protections for the persons and property of children were vital matters, especially in a land where settlement...

    • 96 Abraham Lincoln and Sarah Bush Lincoln
      (pp. 355-356)
      David Herbert Donald

      Within a year of Nancy’s death, Thomas Lincoln recognized that he and his family could not go on alone, and he went back to Kentucky to seek a bride. In Elizabethtown he found Sarah Bush Johnston, whom he had perhaps unsuccessfully courted before he wed Nancy. She was the widow of the Hardin County jailer and mother of three small children. There was no time for a romantic engagement; he needed a wife and she needed a husband. They made a quick, businesslike arrangement for him to pay her debts and for her to pack up her belongings and move...

    • 97 A Childhood in Slavery
      (pp. 357-358)
      Frederick Douglass

      As to my own treatment while I lived on Colonel Lloyd’s plantation, it was very similar to that of the other slave children. I was not old enough to work in the field, and there being little else than field work to do, I had a great deal of leisure time. The most I had to do was to drive up the cows at evening, keep the fowls out of the garden, keep the front yard clean, and run of errands for my old master’s daughter, Mrs. Lucretia Auld. The most of my leisure time I spent in helping Master...

    • 98 Placing Orphan Children with Farm Families
      (pp. 359-366)
      Charles Loring Brace

      In this country, there was the greatest possible inducement for the “placing out” system, for Reformatories on the family plan, and for Farm Schools. The demand here for children’s labor is practically unlimited. A child’s place at the table of the farmer is always open; his food and cost to the family are of little account. A widespread spirit of benevolence, too, has inspired all classes—perhaps one of the latest fruits of Christianity—such as opens thousands of homes to the children of the unfortunate. The chances, too, of ill treatment in a new country, where children are petted...

    • 99 Huckleberry Finn
      (pp. 367-370)
      Mark Twain

      I had shut the door to. Then I turned around, and there he was. I used to be scared of him all the time, he tanned me so much. I reckoned I was scared now, too; but in a minute I see I was mistaken—that is, after the first jolt, as you may say, when my breath sort of hitched, he being so unexpected; but right away after, I see I warn’t scared of him worth bothring about.

      He was most fifty, and he looked it. His hair was long and tangled and greasy and hung down, and you...

    • 100 Shadow of the Plantation: Separation and Adoption
      (pp. 371-373)
      Charles S. Johnson

      The frequency of separations of families with children and the large number of children born outside of formal family relations normally throw a considerable burden of responsibility upon grandparents, and this responsibility, in turn, is accepted as a matter of course. Actually there was a marked sense of social obligation to children, expressed more by grandparents than by parents with numbers of children.

      Sadie Thompson not only had a family of her own, now practically grown, but had undertaken the rearing of some of the grandchildren and other adopted ones. She had enterprise and initiative and both virtues were required...

    • 101 Surviving the Breakup: How Children Respond to Divorce
      (pp. 374-380)
      Judith S. Wallerstein and Joan Berlin Kelly

      The age and developmental groupings into which the children’s responses fell, with a regularity which we had not fully anticipated, provided a congenial way of categorizing their concerns, feelings, and behaviors at the time of the marital breakup. Some of our cases illustrate the close similarities as well as the striking differences which emerged.

      Linda, age four, appeared in our office, an attractive, blond, well-groomed child. When asked about what was happening at home, she solemnly explained that her father was living in the city because he didn’t like Mommy, and that Mommy felt bad because she (Mommy) still liked...

    • 102 Solomon’s Children: The New Biologism, Psychological Parenthood, Attachment Theory, and the Best Interests Standard
      (pp. 381-386)
      Arlene Skolnick

      On August 2, 1993, the American television public looked on as a screaming toddler was taken from her mother’s arms to be sent to another family in another state. The Michigan Supreme Court had ruled that Jan and Roberta DeBoer had no right to keep Baby Jessica, the child they had raised since shortly after birth. Cara Clausen, the birth mother, and the man she had named as the father had signed the adoption papers. Three weeks later, she changed her mind and said she had named the wrong man. She told her ex-boyfriend, Dan Schmidt, that he was the...

    • 103 Fit to Be a Parent?
      (pp. 387-390)
      Mary Ann Mason

      What does it mean to be a fit parent? We have learned that violent criminal behavior—even murder—does not necessarily create a presumption that the perpetrator is an unfit parent in the eyes of the court. Sexual behavior, however, between consenting adults considered deviant for the time and place may do so.

      John Ward had served an eight-year prison term for the second-degree murder in 1974 of his first wife, Judy. They were arguing over custody of their children. He shot her six times, reloaded his gun, and shot six more times.

      Upon his release Ward found stable employment...

    • 104 Lesbian Parents in Custody Disputes
      (pp. 391-394)
      California Court of Appeal

      Natural mother commenced action for declaration that LESBIAN partner was not parent of children, that natural mother was entitled to sole legal and physical custody, and that LESBIAN partner was entitled to visitation only upon natural mother’s consent. The Superior Court, Alameda County, No. 642975-5, Ronald M. Sabraw, J., found for natural mother, and LESBIAN partner appealed. The Court of Appeal, Stein, J., held that: (1) LESBIAN partner who was not natural or adoptive parent was not parent within meaning of Uniform Parentage Act; (2) custody could not be awarded to LESBIAN partner over objections of mother, absent finding that...

    • 105 Surrogacy and Child Custody
      (pp. 395-398)
      California Supreme Court

      In this case we address several of the legal questions raised by recent advances in reproductive technology. When, pursuant to a surrogacy agreement, a zygote formed of the gametes of a husband and wife is implanted in the uterus of another woman, who carries the resulting fetus to term and gives birth to a child not genetically related to her, who is the child’s “natural mother” under California law? Does a determination that the wife is the child’s natural mother work a deprivation of the gestating woman’s constitutional rights? And is such an agreement barred by any public policy of...

    • 106 Teenage Voices from Foster Care
      (pp. 399-403)
      Autobiographical Documents

      For most of my life I felt different from the “normal” kids. They had parents and families but I didn’t, because I lived in a group home.

      We’d have assignments in elementary school and if we didn’t finish them in class, the teacher would say, “When you go home tonight, ask your parents to help you.”

      No one knew how hurt I was by that simple remark. It was not my parents but a counselor who would help me with my homework that night.

      I was embarrassed by my situation and I began to hide my identity. I was almost...

    • 107 Foster Care and the Politics of Compassion
      (pp. 404-409)
      Nanette Schorr

      In 1910, a single mother wrote a poignant appeal to theBintel Brief(letters) section of theJewish Daily Forward. The social supports in her community had failed her, and she had nowhere else to turn.

      My husband deserted me and our three small children, leaving us in desperate need…. I am young and healthy, I am able and willing to work in order to support my children, but unfortunately I am tied down because my baby is only six months old. I looked for an institution which would take care of my baby but my friends advise against it....

    • 108 Orphanage Revival Gains Ground
      (pp. 410-413)
      Katharine Q. Seelye

      Boys’ Home is an orphanage, although none of the 41 boys living there are technically orphans. Many are like Reggie. “My daddy’s a drunk and my mom’s a drug addict,” he said.

      A grown-up 14-year-old in a starched white shirt with a knotted red tie, he noted matter-of-factly that he escaped the family illnesses. As he put it, “They didn’t mess up my brain when I was in birth.”

      Reggie bounced from three foster homes before landing here in 1996.

      “This is mainly my family,” he said of Boys’ Home, a former potato farm spread across a 1-400-acre patch of...

  12. PART 8. The Vulnerable Child
    • 109 Waifs of the City’s Slums
      (pp. 417-421)
      Jacob A. Riis

      [The] Foundling Asylum … stands at the very outset of the waste of life that goes on in a population of nearly two millions of people; powerless to prevent it, though it gather in the outcasts by night and by day. In a score of years an army of twenty-five thousand of these forlorn little waifs have cried out from the streets of New York in arraignment of a Christian civilization under the blessings of which the instinct of motherhood even was smothered by poverty and want. Only the poor abandon their children. The stories of richly dressed foundlings that...

    • 110 Preserving the Home
      (pp. 422-423)
      Conference Document

      The secretary read as follows:

      Should children of parents of worthy character, but suffering from temporary misfortune, and the children of widows of worthy character and reasonable efficiency, be kept with their parents—aid being given the parents to enable them to maintain suitable homes for the rearing of the children? Should the breaking of a home be permitted for reasons of poverty, or only for reasons of inefficiency or immorality?

      The chairman. The opening speaker will be Mr. Michael J. Scanlan, who was for some years a member of the state board of charities of New York, and who...

    • 111 The Mothers’ Aid Movement
      (pp. 424-426)
      Documents from the Child Welfare Movement

      Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois, represented in the General Assembly: That section 7 of the Act entitled “An Act relating to children who are now or may hereafter become dependent, neglected or delinquent … approved June 4, 1907, be and the same hereby amended so as to read as follows:

      If the court shall find any male child under the age of seventeen years or any female child under the age of eighteen years to be dependent or neglected within the meaning of the Act, the court may allow such child to remain at...

    • 112 Infant Mortality
      (pp. 427-431)
      Charles R. King

      The study of infant mortality was, and is, an especially “sensitive indicator” of community health. It “reflects the positive or negative influences exerted by various social factors” upon children’s health. It is “particularly sensitive to environmental conditions, such as housing, sanitation, and pure food and water.” In other words, infant mortality is an indicator of the very factors that form the basis of and promote public health. Thus, as Josephine Baker, the first director of the New York City Bureau of Child Hygiene, concluded, “everything that affects the health of the child, from the beginning of the prenatal period to...

    • 113 Polio
      (pp. 432-435)
      U.S. News & World Report

      Polio cases this year are running about 12 per cent above 1952, which had record high of 57,626 cases.

      That raises questions of what can be done as a protection against the disease …

      And what steps are being taken to fight polio in areas where there are bad epidemics.

      With the polio season at hand, parents want to know: What can you do if the disease shows up in your neighborhood? Can you get shots for your child?Not as a general rule. Where there is one case of polio in a neighborhood, not all children living nearby can...

    • 114 “Welcome to Willowbrook”
      (pp. 436-437)
      Geraldo Rivera

      When Dr. Wilkins slid back the heavy metal door of B Ward, building No. 6, the horrible smell of the place staggered me. It was so wretched that my first thought was that the air was poisonous and would kill me. I looked down to steady myself and I saw a freak: a grotesque caricature of a person, lying under a sink on an incredibly filthy tile floor in an incredibly filthy bathroom. It was wearing trousers, but they were pulled down around the ankles. It was skinny. It was twisted. It was lying in its own feces. And it...

    • 115 Kidnapping in Contemporary America
      (pp. 438-443)
      Paula S. Fass

      Just before 8 a.m. on Friday, May 25, 1979, six-year-old Etan Patz emerged confidently from his parents’ co-op apartment in the SoHo district of New York to begin the two-block walk to the school bus stop. Etan had been eager for some time to do this on his own as a sign of a new maturity, and his mother had finally assented. She watched him briefly from her loft’s third-floor fire escape as he proceeded from their home on 113 Prince Street to the intersection of Wooster. She then turned back into the apartment, and Etan vanished into the New...

    • 116 The Last Frontier in Child Abuse
      (pp. 444-448)
      Suzanne M. Sgroi

      The professional who becomes sufficiently concerned and knowledgeable about sexual abuse of children to be consistently alert to the possibility that sexual molestationmayhave occurred will often face a spectrum of reactions from his colleagues that range from incredulity to frank hostility. For although the pioneering efforts of many distinguished professionals and dedicated lay people over the past decade have made child abuse a national issue, the problem of sexual molestation of children remains a taboo topic in many areas.

      This is not to argue that the problem of child abuse has been “solved” anywhere in the United States....

    • 117 By Silence Betrayed: The Sexual Abuse of Children in America
      (pp. 449-452)
      John Crewdson

      It was sometime on the afternoon of September 26, 1983, that Judy Kath and Christine Brown, their ten-year-old daughters in tow, marched into the Jordan, Minnesota, police department. The two girls, their mothers said, wanted to talk to someone about James John Rud, a twenty-seven-year-old trash collector who lived by himself in a shabby mobile home at the Valley Green Trailer Park. Jordan’s five-man department had no one on its staff who could qualify as an expert in child sexual abuse, certainly not patrolman Larry Norring. But when the girls announced that Rud had been abusing them sexually, Norring did...

    • 118 Miscounting Social Ills
      (pp. 453-455)
      Neil Gilbert

      Social policy deliberations have become muddled in recent years by an increasing tendency among advocates for different groups to generate vast and often questionable estimates of social ills afflicting their clients. Advocacy research has not always been that way. The development of social welfare policy in the United States has benefitted from a long and honorable tradition of advocacy research—studies that seek to measure social problems, heighten public awareness of them, and recommend possible solutions….

      The expanding volume and declining quality of advocacy research has spawned the use of emotive statistics—startling figures that purport to document “hidden crises”...

    • 119 Psychiatric Hospitals for Juveniles?
      (pp. 456-458)
      Sylvia Ann Hewlett

      It’s time for a commercial break on a local TV station in Louisiana, and the face of a distraught, weeping father fills the screen. He is talking about how he never listened to his son, how he never paid enough attention to him, and now it is too late. The man pauses, swallows hard, and then tells us that his son has just committed suicide. A violin starts to play, a heart-tugging backdrop to the pathetic sounds of a father crying over his son’s suicide. At this point the sales pitch comes on: viewers are urged to consider seeking professional...

    • 120 Couple Held in Beating of Daughter
      (pp. 459-461)
      Todd S. Purdum

      A Manhattan lawyer and a former children’s book editor were charged yesterday with the attempted murder of their 6-year-old daughter after the police answered a call for medical help at the couple’s Greenwich Village apartment and found that the girl had been severely beaten.

      The lawyer, Joel Barnet Steinberg, 46, and the former editor, Hedda Nussbaum, 45, of 14 West 10th Street, were charged after they refused to make any statements about the girl’s injuries. The police said the couple were not married, but had lived together for 17 years.

      The girl, Elizabeth, was listed in extremely critical condition at...

    • 121 A Glimpse into a Hell for Helpless Infants
      (pp. 462-465)
      New York Times

      Child abuse typically occurs behind a veil of family privacy and deceit. In the current issue of the journalPediatrics, British researchers part that veil a bit. And the picture they present is harrowing.

      The researchers got the permission of the British child-welfare authorities to clandestinely videotape parents visiting their children hospitalized after suspected incidents of abuse. From 1986 to 1994, hidden cameras at two hospitals filmed 39 children, aged 2 months to 4 years, alone with their parents. In all but 6 of the cases, the cameras caught either mother or father kicking, slapping, trying to suffocate or otherwise...

    • 122 An Infant’s Death, an Ancient “Why?”
      (pp. 466-468)
      Jan Hoffman

      Discordant images from a Wilmington, Del., courthouse last week:

      Two chipmunk-cheeked college freshmen, blushing, tearful, whispering as they sit at the defense table. After the hearing, their fingertips brush in farewell.

      Then both are returned to prison, having just pled not guilty to the intentional or reckless murder of their newborn son, found abandoned last month in a motel Dumpster.

      Their lawyers say the baby was brain-damaged and did not survive delivery. But if, as prosecutors say, the infant was born healthy and died from a fractured skull and from being shaken, the couple committed a stark act of incomprehensible...

    • 123 Media Violence and Children
      (pp. 469-472)
      Hillary Rodham Clinton

      American children are immersed in a culture of violence. They see violence on television. They see violence in movie theaters. They see it on the streets where they live. They see it in their schools. They see it in their homes.

      In too many neighborhoods, gunfire has become a daily ritual of life. An Uzi has become a badge of honor. A bullet wound has become an emblem of adulthood. Just this last week, on Monday, I was across the country, in New York, where I visited a very large hospital in Brooklyn, a hospital that treats gunshot wounds and...

    • 124 A Teenage Voice from Foster Care
      (pp. 473-477)
      Autobiographical Document

      It’s a weekday evening. I’m sitting on top of my bed, sobbing profusely. Just received a beating from my mother. What did I do to deserve it? I can’t really remember.

      Sometimes I’d get beat if I talked back to grandma. Other times, for touching something in the house that didn’t belong to me. Or for forgetting to clean out the tub after I’d used it.

      Really didn’t matter what I’d get beat for. At the end of some whippings, I’d sit on my bed and say to myself,When I have kids, I’m never gonna beat them.

      Mother demanded...

  13. PART 9. Sexuality
    • 125 The Turn of the Screw
      (pp. 481-487)
      Henry James

      I was a little late on the scene of his arrival, and I felt, as he stood wistfully looking out for me before the door of the inn at which the coach had put him down, that I had seen him on the instant, without and within, in the great glow of freshness, the same positive fragrance of purity, in which I had from the first moment seen his little sister. He was incredibly beautiful, and Mrs. Grose had put her finger on it: everything but a sort of passion of tenderness for him was swept away by his presence....

    • 126 Child-Loving: The Erotic Child and Victorian Culture
      (pp. 488-490)
      James R. Kincaid

      To a large extent what we know about the history of pedophilia begins with the nineteenth century.

      That is not the same thing as saying that pedophilia itself begins with the nineteenth century. However, it can be argued that the special historical construction of “the child” during this period and slightly before made it available to desire in a way not previously possible, made it available by, among other things, making it different, a strange and alien species that was once, and in some way is still, continuous with the adult. This highlighted, special, and different child was also made...

    • 127 Polymorphous Perversity
      (pp. 491-493)
      Sigmund Freud

      What we have already ascertained has guided us to the study of the child’s mental life, and we may now hope to find in a similar way an explanation of the source of the other kind of prohibited wishes in dreams, i.e. the excessive sexual desires. We are impelled therefore to study the development of the sexual life of the child, and here from various sources we learn the following facts. In the first place, it is an untenable fallacy to suppose that the child has no sexual life and to assume that sexuality first makes its appearance at puberty,...

    • 128 Delinquent Daughters: The Age-of-Consent Campaign
      (pp. 494-498)
      Mary E. Odem

      The age of consent in American law was based on previously established standards developed over the centuries in England. Under English common law, the age of female discretion was held to be twelve years. A parliamentary statute in 1576 lowered the age of consent in sexual relations to ten years and explicitly designated such relations with an underage female, without benefit of clergy, as a felony. According to William Blackstone, the foremost British legal scholar in the eighteenth century, this statute superseded the older common-law standard of female consent in rape cases. Hence, any male over the age of fourteen...

    • 129 Coming of Age in Samoa
      (pp. 499-499)
      Margaret Mead

      From the Samoans’ complete knowledge of sex, its possibilities and its rewards, they are able to count it at its true value. And if they have no preference for reserving sex activity for important relationships, neither do they regard relationships as important because they are productive of sex satisfaction. The Samoan girl who shrugs her shoulder over the excellent technique of some young Lothario is nearer to the recognition of sex as an impersonal force without any intrinsic validity, than is the sheltered American girl who falls in love with the first man who kisses her. From their familiarity with...

    • 130 Preadolescent Sexuality
      (pp. 500-510)
      Kinsey Institute for Sex Research

      What seem to be sexual responses have been observed in infants immediately at birth, and specifically sexual responses, involving the full display of physiologic changes which are typical of the responses of an adult, have been observed in both female and male infants as young as four months of age, and in infants and pre-adolescent children of every older age.

      About one per cent of the older females who have contributed histories to the present study recalled that they were making specifically sexual responses to physical stimuli, and in some instances to psychologic stimuli, when they were as young as...

    • 131 Lolita
      (pp. 511-514)
      Vladimir Nabokov

      She would be, figuratively speaking, wagging her tiny tail, her whole behind in fact as little bitches do—while some grinning stranger accosted us and began a bright conversation with a comparative study of license plates. “Long way from home!” Inquisitive parents, in order to pump Lo about me, would suggest her going to a movie with their children. We had some close shaves. The waterfall nuisance pursued me of course in all our caravansaries. But I never realized how wafery their wall substance was until one evening, after I had loved too loudly, a neighbor’s masculine cough filled the...

    • 132 The Disappearance of Childhood: The Total Disclosure Medium
      (pp. 515-517)
      Neil Postman

      Like alphabetic writing and the printed book, television opens secrets, makes public what has previously been private. But unlike writing and printing, television has no way to close things down. The great paradox of literacy was that as it made secrets accessible, it simultaneously created an obstacle to their availability. One mustqualifyfor the deeper mysteries of the printed page by submitting oneself to the rigors of a scholastic education. One must progress slowly, sequentially, even painfully, as the capacity for self-restraint and conceptual thinking is both enriched and expanded. I vividly remember being told as a thirteen-year-old of...

    • 133 The Assault on Truth: Freud’s Suppression of the Seduction Theory
      (pp. 518-520)
      Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson

      The objections Freud raises in the letter [to his intimate correspondent Wilhelm Fliess on September 27, 1897] to the reality of the sexual abuse of children sound like those raised earlier by his colleagues, critical of the theory from the beginning. Freud had answered those objections in the three 1896 papers on seduction, … papers in which Freud establishes his belief in the reality of childhood seduction, providing evidence and answers to possible objections, the very objections that Freud raises in this letter. The letter symbolizes the beginning of an internal reconciliation with his colleagues and with the whole of...

    • 134 The Unraveling of a Monstrous Secret
      (pp. 521-523)
      Marla Williams and Dee Norton

      There is right, and there is wrong.

      In Cherie Town’s book, it was wrong for her husband to be messing around with other women. So when he started bragging, she picked up the phone and called the Rape Crisis Center.

      She told a counselor that her husband, Meredith “Gene” Town, had for years been molesting their two young sons ….

      So began the painful unraveling of a monstrous secret.

      That secret allegedly was shared by at least two dozen adults and some 50 children said to be members of “The Circle.” A loosely organized circle of friends consisted of two...

    • 135 On Prison Computer, Files to Make Parents Shiver
      (pp. 524-529)
      Nina Bernstein

      Fertile, Minn.—Anchored to the windswept prairie by a grain elevator and a dead-end railroad track, this town of 900 people seems as remote from the dark side of cyberspace as it is from the lights of Times Square.

      Yet 99 of Fertile’s children are among thousands whose names were secretly compiled, annotated and stored with a cache of child pornography on a computer used by a convicted pedophile in a Minnesota state prison hundreds of miles away.

      The man who managed the computer operation, an inmate with multiple convictions for child sexual assault, remains in prison. He has been...

    • 136 The Politics of Parental Notification
      (pp. 530-533)
      Maris A. Vinovskis

      The provision of federally funded family planning services for adolescents is a relatively recent phenomenon in our history. Twenty years ago, family planning providers and policymakers were reluctant to acknowledge publicly that teens even had access to such services. Yet today the provision of contraceptives to teenagers, even without their parents’ knowledge, seems commonplace and normal to many Americans.

      Several factors contributed to this change. For example, the steady expansion in government provision of contraceptives to all women has led to a greater tolerance for the provision of contraceptives to unmarried teenagers. A few outspoken individuals still oppose any government...

  14. PART 10. The Child and the State
    • 137 The Family in the Social Order
      (pp. 537-538)
      Colonial Document

      This Court, taking into consideration the great neglect in many parents and masters in training up their children in learning, and labor, and other employments which may be profitable to the commonwealth, do hereupon order and decree that in every town the chosen men appointed for managing the prudential affairs of the same shall henceforth stand charged with the care of the redress of this evil, so as they shall be liable to be punished or fined for the neglect thereof, upon any presentment of the grand jurors or other information or complaint in any plantations in this jurisdiction …....

    • 138 The Child-Saving Movement
      (pp. 539-542)
      Jacob A. Riis

      On a thriving farm up in Central New York a happy young wife goes singing about her household work to-day who once as a helpless, wretched waif in the great city through her very helplessness and misery stirred up a social revolution whose waves beat literally upon the farthest shores. The story of little Mary Ellen moved New York eighteen years ago as it had scarce ever been stirred by news of disaster or distress before. In the simple but eloquent language of the public record it is thus told: “In the summer of 1874 a poor woman lay dying...

    • 139 The Progressive-Era Transformation of Child Protection, 1900–1920
      (pp. 543-548)
      Linda Gordon

      A stenographer hired at the MSPCC [Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children] in 1908, and remaining until 1947, left a vivid memoir of the appearance of that agency when she first arrived.

      We started at the top in the Children’s Home where Miss Wilson a typical keyring-bunch matron, with dyed hair and a compelling voice conducted us on a tour of the Home. … the children arose and sing-songed the Lord’s prayer which they followed with a rendition of the National Anthem, as their eyes rolled about in restless fashion and their hands were tightly folded. One...

    • 140 The State as Superparent
      (pp. 549-554)
      Mary Ann Mason

      With this reasoning the appellate court of Georgia reversed the trial court, which had awarded the custody of Mrs. Moore’s three illegitimate children all under age twelve to an orphanage. The trial court had relied upon a Georgia statute that declared that any child under age twelve could be removed to an orphan asylum or other charitable institution if it “is being reared up under immoral obscene or indecent influences likely to degrade its moral character and devote it to a vicious life.” Without questioning the statute, the court of appeals determined that the trial court had failed to prove...

    • 141 The Children’s Bureau
      (pp. 555-558)
      Government Documents

      For more than a generation we have had a so-called Department of Education. It has published information so inconclusive and so belated that it is the laughing stock of Europeans interested in our educational institutions; so belated, moreover, that it is worthless for our own uses in obtaining improved legislation in this country.

      Meanwhile it is left to a feeble volunteer society to collect a few hundred dollars, here and there, and publish in January, every year, the new statutes which have taken effect in the twelve months next preceding. Why does not the Department of Education do this? Why...

    • 142 The Establishment of Juvenile Courts
      (pp. 559-565)
      Susan Tiffin

      Throughout the nineteenth century, dependent, neglected, and delinquent children were made public wards by a wide variety of courts and social agencies that were often incapable of understanding and dealing with their situations. The courts were frequently restricted in the ways they might dispose of children or forced by monetary conditions and institutional deficiencies to return children to the same detrimental environments from which they had come. Juvenile lawbreakers were particularly unfortunate. In most states, common criminal law did not greatly differentiate between the adult and the minor who had reached the age of criminal responsibility. This varied between seven...

    • 143 Juvenile Court and the Artistry of Approach
      (pp. 566-569)
      Ben B. Lindsey and Rube Borough

      Thus with constructive laws we built the architecture of the state around its best asset, childhood. And for these more than fifty items of legislation and constructive work I have no apology to make.

      But I was to find as our work progressed that these laws, however much they were exploited, praised and many of them copied over this country and in other countries, were not the most important things; that, without understanding men to administer them and to develop their implications, they did not get us very far in the fight for the child and the home.

      I might...

    • 144 The Children’s Charter
      (pp. 570-572)
      White House Conference Document


      For every child spiritual and moral training to help him to stand firm under the pressure of life

      II For every child understanding and the guarding of his personality as his most precious right

      III For every child a home and that love and security which a home provides; and for that child who must receive foster care, the nearest substitute for his own home

      IV For every...

    • 145 The First Amendment in School
      (pp. 573-577)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Justice Fortas delivered the opinion of the Court.

      Petitioner John F. Tinker, 15 years old, and petitioner Christopher Eckhardt, 16 years old, attended high schools in Des Moines, Iowa. Petitioner Mary Beth Tinker, John’s sister, was a 13-year-old student in junior high school.

      In December 1965, a group of adults and students in Des Moines held a meeting at the Eckhardt home. The group determined to publicize their objections to the hostilities in Vietnam and their support for a truce by wearing black armbands during the holiday season and by fasting on December 16 and New Year’s Eve. Petitioners...

    • 146 Juveniles’ Right to Due Process
      (pp. 578-584)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Justice Fortas delivered the opinion of the Court.

      This is an appeal under 28 U.S.C. §1257(2) from a judgment of the Supreme Court of Arizona affirming the dismissal of a petition for a writ of habeas corpus. 99 Ariz. 181, 407 P.2d 760 (1965). The petition sought the release of Gerald Francis Gault, appellants’ 15-year-old son, who had been committed as a juvenile delinquent to the State Industrial School by the Juvenile Court of Gila County, Arizona. The Supreme Court of Arizona affirmed dismissal of the writ…. We do not agree, and we reverse….

      On Monday, June 8, 1964,...

    • 147 Punishing Very Young Criminals
      (pp. 585-586)
      Peter Fimrite

      A 6-year-old Richmond [California] boy who was jailed for allegedly attempting to beat a baby to death has focused nationwide attention on a juvenile justice system that is unequipped to meet the long-term needs of young children who commit violent crimes.

      The boy was charged with attempted murder for entering a Richmond apartment with 8-year-old twin brothers last week, dumping 4-week-old Ignacio Bermudez out of a bassinet and punching, kicking and beating the child with a stick before stealing a Big Wheel-style tricycle.

      When the three boys were placed in juvenile hall in Martinez, workers had to scramble to find...

    • 148 Vote for Eighteen-Year-Olds: What Justices Said on Both Sides
      (pp. 587-590)
      U.S. News & World Report

      Legal scholars and political scientists are still analyzing the historic Supreme Court decision of December 21 upholding the 1970 Voting Rights Act.

      By a 5-to-4 opinion, the Court held that Congress could, by statute, lower the voting age to 18 in federal elections, without amending the Constitution.

      In another 5-to-4 vote, the Court found that Congress does not have the power under the Constitution to fix the voting age in State and local elections.

      Four Justices—including Chief Justice Warren E. Burger, John M. Harlan, Potter Stewart and Harry A. Blackmun—held that the qualification of voters in all elections...

    • 149 The Right to Vote
      (pp. 591-591)
      U.S. Constitution

      Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age....

    • 150 Now That the Voting Age Is Lower …
      (pp. 592-593)
      U.S. News & World Report

      A possible key element in next year’s elections, now being analyzed by political leaders and potential candidates for office, is this:

      Out of each 100 Americans old enough to vote, 18 will be youths aged 18 through 24, eligible for their first trip to the polls.

      Never before has the potential youth vote in a presidential-election year been so high. Reason for the boost: ratification on June 30 of the 26th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, giving extended voting rights to youths over 18. Ohio, the 38th State to ratify, put the amendment across.

      When the number of newly franchised...

    • 151 Contraception
      (pp. 594-595)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Justice Brennan delivered the opinion of the Court (Parts I, II, III, and V), together with an opinion (Part IV), in which Mr. Justice Stewart, Mr. Justice Marshall, and Mr. Justice Blackmun joined.

      Under New York Educ. Law § 6811 (8) (McKinney 1972) it is a crime (1) for any person to sell or distribute any contraceptive of any kind to a minor under the age of 16 years; (2) for anyone other than a licensed pharmacist to distribute contraceptives to persons 16 or over; and (3) for anyone, including licensed pharmacists, to advertise or display contraceptives. A three-judge...

    • 152 Abortion
      (pp. 596-598)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Justice Powell announced the judgment of the Court and delivered an opinion, in which The Chief Justice, Mr. Justice Stewart, and Mr. Justice Rehnquist joined.

      These appeals present a challenge to the constitutionality of a state statute regulating the access of minors to abortions. They require us to continue the inquiry we began in Planned Parenthood of Central Missouri v. Danforth, 428 U.S. 52 (1976), and Bellotti v. Baird, 428 U.S. 132 (1976).

      On August 2, 1974, the Legislature of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts passed … an Act pertaining to abortions…. 1974 Mass. Acts, ch. 706. According to its...

    • 153 Mental Health and the Rights of the Child
      (pp. 599-602)
      U.S. Supreme Court

      Mr. Chief Justice Burger delivered the opinion of the Court.

      The question presented in this appeal is what process is constitutionally due a minor child whose parents or guardian seek state administered institutional mental health care for the child and specifically whether an adversary proceeding is required prior to or after the commitment.

      Appellee J. R., a child being treated in a Georgia state mental hospital, was a plaintiff in this class action based on 42 U.S.C. §1983, in the District Court for the Middle District of Georgia. Appellants are the State’s Commissioner of the Department of Human Resources, the...

    • 154 Visitation Rights
      (pp. 603-608)
      Illinois Appellate Court

      Mother filed petition to modify father’s visitation rights, and father’s action for contempt was transferred from other state. The 12th Judicial Circuit Court, Will County, Ludwig J. Kuhar, J., denied mother’s petition, found mother to be in contempt, ordered children to comply with visitation, and found children to be in contempt when they refused to go with father. Mother and children via guardian ad litem appealed. The Appellate Court, Lytton, J., stayed contempt judgment, consolidated action, and held that: (1) finding that father did not pose danger to children was supported by sufficient evidence; (2) children were bound by visitation...

    • 155 A Voice for the Child?
      (pp. 609-611)
      Mary Ann Mason

      Consider these facts: A child who steals a candy bar at a Seven Eleven can request a lawyer. A child of fourteen whose parents are dead may choose his own guardian. A girl is entitled to an abortion without notifying her parents in most states. Yet a child who is the object of a brutal tug-of-war between adults is powerless.

      In the center of most child custody disputes is a large black hole representing the absence of the voice of the child. There are many ways in which the actual child is not attended to. The wishes and feelings of...

    • 156 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child
      (pp. 612-615)
      UN Document

      The States Parties to the present Convention,

      Considering that, in accordance with the principles proclaimed in the Charter of the United Nations, recognition of the inherent dignity and of the equal and inalienable rights of all members of the human family is the foundation of freedom, justice and peace in the world,

      Bearing in mind that the peoples of the United Nations have, in the Charter, reaffirmed their faith in fundamental human rights and in the dignity and worth of the human person, and have determined to promote social progress and better standards of life in larger freedom,

      Recognizing that...

  15. PART 11. The Child’s World
    • 157 The Material Culture of Early Childhood: The Upright Child
      (pp. 619-624)
      Karin Calvert

      Infants remained completely swaddled for at least the first three months. After that, if the weather was not too cold, their arms were freed, but their legs remained bound. At anywhere from six to nine months of age, swaddling stopped and children went into their first long petticoats. Exactly when a mother decided to modify or give up swaddling depended on the health and physical shape of the child, the work schedule of the mother, and the time of the year, since physicians urged that swaddling be continued through the winter months and that any change wait for warmer weather....

    • 158 My Life in the South
      (pp. 625-626)
      Jacob Stroyer

      Gilbert was a cruel [slave] boy. He used to strip his fellow Negroes while in the woods, and whip them two or three times a week, so that their backs were all scarred, and threatened them with severer punishments if they told; this state of things had been going on for quite a while. As I was a favorite with Gilbert, I always managed to escape a whipping, with the promise of keeping the secret of the punishment of the rest…. But finally, one day, Gilbert said to me, “Jake,” as he used to call me, “you am a good...

    • 159 A Russian Jewish Girlhood on the Lower East Side
      (pp. 627-631)
      Rose Cohen

      When our names were called I rose quickly and followed Aunt Masha. The clerk who always came to the door, which he opened only a little, looked at us and asked our names. Then he let Aunt Masha go in and pushing me away roughly without a word he shut the heavy door in my face.

      I stood nearby waiting, until my feet ached. When Aunt Masha came out at last her face was flushed and there were tears in her eyes. Immediately she went over to her friends (she had many friends by that time) and began to talk...

    • 160 Quiet Odyssey: A Pioneer Korean Woman in America
      (pp. 632-636)
      Mary Paik Lee

      We were told that there were only a few quicksilver mines in the United States, the largest of which was in Idria. On the way to Idria, we had to stop in Sacramento, because Mother became very ill. We stayed at a boardinghouse owned by a Mr. and Mrs. Lee, where another brother, Young Sun, was born February 26, 1914. Mother was so weary and ill she almost died that night giving birth. Young Sun, also named (but never called) Lawrence, was born more dead than alive, a blue baby. Father and I had to place him in hot and...

    • 161 Call It Sleep
      (pp. 637-641)
      Henry Roth

      With one on either side of him and one behind, David climbed up the junk heap and threaded his way cautiously over the savage iron morraine. Only one hope sustained him—that was to find a man on the other side to run to. Before him the soft, impartial April sunlight spilt over a hill of shattered stoves, splintered wheels, cracked drain pipes, potsherds, marine engines split along cruel and jagged edges. Eagerly, he looked beyond—only the suddenly alien, empty street and the glittering cartracks, branching off at the end.

      “Peugh! Wadda stink!” Pedey spat. “Who opened his hole?”...

    • 162 Young Lonigan
      (pp. 642-645)
      James T. Farrell

      That night when Studs was ready to go out, he walked into the parlor. The old man and the old lady were sitting there, and the old boy was in his slippers sucking on a stogy; and the two of them were enjoying a conversation about the latest rape case in the newspapers in which the rapist was named Gogarty. Studs noticed that when he entered they shut up. He wondered what the hell did they think he was. Did they think he was born yesterday, and still believed in Santa Claus, the Easter Rabbit and storks? He wanted to...

    • 163 Growing Up Native American: The Language We Know
      (pp. 646-648)
      Simon Ortiz

      I don’t remember a world without language. From the time of my earliest childhood, there was language. Always language, and imagination, speculation, utters of sound. Words, beginnings of words. What would I be without language? My existence has been determined by language, not only the spoken but the unspoken, the language of speech and the language of motion. I can’t remember a world without memory. Memory, immediate and far away in the past, something in the sinew, blood, ageless cell. Although I don’t recall the exact moment I spoke or tried to speak, I know the feeling of something tugging...

    • 164 Down These Mean Streets
      (pp. 649-652)
      Piri Thomas

      I got to my stoop, and made it into the dark gloomy hallway. I cut up the stairs and pushed the door on Apartment 3 and slammed it shut behind me with a blast.

      “Hey, what’s the matter with you?” my mother called from the kitchen. She came to see for herself. “Que muchacho!You would think you never learned how to shut a door. Listen, go outside and come in again like people.”

      “Aw, Moms, everything bothers you.”

      “You heard me.”

      “Okay, okay, Moms.”

      I walked out the door, stood outside for a moment, and then opened the door....

    • 165 I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings
      (pp. 653-656)
      Maya Angelou

      “Thou shall not be dirty” and “Thou shall not be impudent” were the two commandments of Grandmother Henderson upon which hung our total salvation.

      Each night in the bitterest winter we were forced to wash faces, arms, necks, legs and feet before going to bed. She used to add, with a smirk that unprofane people can’t control when venturing into profanity, “and wash as far as possible, then wash possible.”

      We would go to the well and wash in the ice-cold, clear water, grease our legs with the equally cold stiff Vaseline, then tiptoe into the house. We wiped the...

    • 166 China Boy
      (pp. 657-662)
      Gus Lee

      A rail-thin nine-year-old named Toussaint LaRue looked on during these beatings and only hit me once. I therefore assumed that he occupied some lower social niche than mine. Like a snail’s.

      He took no pleasure in the China Boy rituals. He instead talked to me. I suspected that he had devised a new method of pain infliction.

      “Toussaint,” he said, offering his hand. “Ya’lls supposed ta shake it.” He grinned when I put my hand out with the same enthusiasm with which I would pet Mr. Carter’s bulldog. Toussaint, like Evil, had a big gap between his front teeth.


    • 167 Talking to High Monks in the Snow: An Asian American Odyssey
      (pp. 663-665)
      Lydia Yuri Minatoya

      Perhaps it begins with my naming. During her pregnancy, my mother was reading Dr. Spock. “Children need to belong,” he cautioned. “An unusual name can make them the subject of ridicule.” My father frowned when he heard this. He stole a worried glance at my sister. Burdened by her Japanese name, Misa played unsuspectingly on the kitchen floor.

      The Japanese know full well the dangers of conspicuousness. “The nail that sticks out gets pounded down,” cautions an old maxim. In America, Relocation was all the proof they needed.

      And so it was, with great earnestness, my parents searched for a...

    • 168 The Adventures of Tom Sawyer
      (pp. 666-668)
      Mark Twain

      But Tom’s energy did not last. He began to think of the fun he had planned for this day, and his sorrows multiplied. Soon the free boys would come tripping along on all sorts of delicious expeditions, and they would make a world of fun of him for having to work—the very thought of it burned him like fire. He got out his worldly wealth and examined it—bits of toys, marbles, and trash; enough to buy an exchange ofwork, maybe, but not half enough to buy so much as half an hour of pure freedom. So he...

    • 169 The Days Gone By
      (pp. 669-669)
      James Whitcomb Riley
    • 170 The Wizard of Oz
      (pp. 670-672)
      L. Frank Baum

      They began walking through the country of the china people, and the first thing they came to was a china milk-maid milking a china cow. As they drew near the cow suddenly gave a kick and kicked over the stool, the pail, and even the milkmaid herself, all falling on the china ground with a great clatter.

      Dorothy was shocked to see that the cow had broken her leg short off, and that the pail was lying in several small pieces, while the poor milk-maid had a nick in her left elbow.

      “There!” cried the milk-maid, angrily; “see what you...

    • 171 Anne of Green Gables
      (pp. 673-675)
      L. M. Montgomery

      Anne had been a fortnight at Green Gables before Mrs. Lynde arrived to inspect her. Mrs. Rachel, to do her justice, was not to blame for this. A severe and unseasonable attack of grippe had confined that good lady to her house ever since the occasion of her last visit to Green Gables. Mrs. Rachel was not often sick and had a well-defined contempt for people who were; but grippe, she asserted, was like no other illness on earth and could only be interpreted as one of the special visitations of Providence. As soon as her doctor allowed her to...

    • 172 The Sneetches
      (pp. 676-678)
      Dr. Seuss
    • 173 Snozzcumbers
      (pp. 679-683)
      Roald Dahl

      “But if you don’t eat people like all the others,” Sophie said, “then whatdoyou live on?”

      “That is a squelching tricky problem around here,” the BFG answered. “In this sloshflunking Giant Country, happy eats like pineapples and pigwinkles is simply not growing. Nothing is growing except for one extremely icky-poo vegetable. It is called the snozzcumber.”

      “The snozzcumber!” cried Sophie. “There’s no such thing.”

      The BFG looked at Sophie and smiled, showing about twenty of his square white teeth. “Yesterday,” he said, “we was not believing in giants, was we? Today we is not believing in snozzcumbers. Just...

    • 174 American Children and Their Books
      (pp. 684-689)
      Gillian Avery

      The 1820s also saw the advent of Samuel Goodrich’s Peter Parley books, in which the narrator, Parley, dispenses information in a manner that was to become immensely popular with his readers. The Parley style was didactic, but more informal than the turgid little compilations of facts that hack writers in England were producing about this time, and other American writers took it up. Goodrich also conducted a fierce ideological war against fairy-tales and nursery rhymes. A true child of the New World, he felt that a rational, properly educated generation should have no dealings with these relics of a credulous...

    • 175 Children in Fiction and Fact
      (pp. 690-693)
      Anne Scott MacLeod

      What they read was a great grab bag of material, good, bad, and mediocre, adult and juvenile, books and magazines. Children of the time read, as reading children always do, whatever they could put their hands on, mixing levels and qualities entirely without prejudice. Edna Ferber, for example: “Our reading was undirected, haphazard…. By the time I was nine I had read all of Dickens, but I also adored the Five Little Pepper books, the St. Nicholas magazine, all of Louisa May Alcott, and the bound copies of Harper’s Bazaar,Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates, the novels of The...

    • 176 Kids’ Stuff: Toys and the Changing World of American Childhood
      (pp. 694-696)
      Gary Cross

      No American child in the years between 1977 and 1983 could have avoided George Lucas’sStar Warstrilogy. American boys, especially, were inundated with toy figures, vehicles, and playsets built around the rivalry of Darth Vader and Luke Skywalker. By 1987 some ninety-four figures and sixty accessories had been manufactured by Kenner, Lucasfilm’s exclusive toy licensee. The first two Star Wars movies earned $870 million by 1983 when the final one was released. But the licensed products raked in $2 billion. While delays in production prevented most eager buyers from getting their Star Wars figures in time for the holidays...

    • 177 What Makes Nick Tick: Nickelodeon Is a Sensibility, a World, an All-Empowering Club: It’s CNN for Children
      (pp. 697-699)
      Don Steinberg

      So, sure,Titanichas reaped more than half a billion dollars at the box office for Paramount Studios and its mothership, Viacom Inc., transforming the most expensive movie in history into the highest grossing. And that’s beforeTitanicreaches the shelves of Viacom’s 4,300 Blockbuster Video stores in 20 countries (supposedly there’s a Blockbuster within a 10-minute drive of every major neighborhood in the United States).

      Still, if you want to understand where this $13 billion media conglomerate is pinning its hopes for the future, it helps to be at the edge of New York’s financial district, sitting on the...

    • 178 Children’s Literary Voices
      (pp. 700-703)
      Merlyn’s Pen

      Our ’86 Honda swishes through a puddle, spraying tiny drops of water into the bushes by the road. Green bushes turned black by heavy dark clouds, dark dark just like the negative space on a photocopy, like spilt ink you can’t rub off. The clouds have come down to Earth today, wrapped in the dark as if they need protection.

      We drive down the street, the one I don’t know the name of, past the doctor’s office, to I don’t know where. And I don’t care. The light from cars and streetlights streaks out in the rain like a washed-out...

  16. Sources
    (pp. 704-714)
  17. Index
    (pp. 715-724)
  18. About the Editors
    (pp. 725-725)