From Shakespeare’s Lady Macbeth to Austen’s Nightmare-Wife-Mrs Bennet from Pride and Prejudice, we see the pitfalls of ambition. Ambition for oneself is one thing but what about parents, who are ambitious for their children? Only recently the tiger mother has come into genesis but it is not a new concept. Is there something wrong with women or men who are wanting their children to fulfill a desire that they could not fulfill themselves, the father who wants his son to play cricket for Australia, England or India or the mother who wants her daughter to be Continue reading
Category Archives: Childhood
Sometimes parents take the democratic values of equality between parents and children to such an extent that the roles can be reversed; the case of the parentified child shows the pitfalls of this. Should we allow the child to parent the parent? The child is often very independent and might even wake the parent or remind them of their jobs. Sometimes a child will play confidant to their parent’s troubles.
Often children can take on the parenting role when the actual parent has Continue reading
What an enduring truism, a way to a woman’s heart is through praise of her children. Why is it that when someone is quick to notice a particular gift in one of our offspring we feel a sense of warmth for that very person? Is it true that sometimes too much praise can set up an addiction in a child that is difficult to break?
Being able to distinguish between genuine praise and praise linked to an agenda is Continue reading
Philosophers, the world over, from east to west, from radical to traditional, dwell on this question. Obviously one’s childhood has an effect. Children from happy and stimulating homes do well in life. But what about children who have to struggle? Can this also be a motivator? A child can have all the advantages and fail. How many children from extremely successful parents lose their way? And why do men like Bill Clinton, or Barak Obama, men from some-what struggling single parent families, rise to be Americans presidents? Continue reading
What could Jane Austen possibly say about children that would have any relevance to today? As I struggle bringing up children in my very modern world, how could I rationally think of looking to Jane Austen to find some answers to my very modern dilemmas.She wrote of a world 200 years removed; a world of the rural village; a world without modern conveniences; a world where women were restricted to half a life. How different from me. I live in Australia, in a suburb just outside Melbourne, am a beneficiary of a university education, a job and a family. Yet, strangely I do find that she does have something to offer. I know I am just a little bit crazy but then all quests begin with a touch of madness!
Jane Austen was born in a little Hampshire village called Steventon, the seventh child of parents Cassandra and George. Continue reading
Jane did live 200 years ago. She did write from a domestic point of view but within this she has much to say that can be generalised to us in the modern world. The interest in Jane Austen is now phenomenal for very good reason as she had much to say about children, family, romance and marriage, feminism or the woman’s question, money, resilience and living the everyday life.