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Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children 
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Post Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children



Fri Jan 25, 2013 11:11 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
As Robert mentioned before, a very interesting discussion about child rearing. Modern Western methods of separation of mother and child (both nursing, sleeping, and in general) basically was unheard of in traditional societies.

As he says, modern developmental psychology was based on Western countries, and until recently didn't use these "thousands of natural experiments on how to rear children."

He mentions on p. 185 that !Kung infants were advanced in some aspects of neuromotor development compared to American infants, although he didn't go into any detail on this.



Wed Feb 13, 2013 6:16 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
Humans extended the helpless period of their young way beyond that of other animals, because brain development took so much longer. It's interesting that modern state societies extend this helplessness even farther out, farther than is necessary. Now we don't reach the age of adult independence until after four years of college, if then. Diamond points out that children in traditional societies will have taken on adult roles much sooner, while still retaining some degree of dependence on the older members. He says that children can become competent parents at ages that would concern us greatly, because they've done a lot of child-rearing themselves by adolescence (or at least the girls have).

Having less age segregation among children is a good idea, too. That's the one-room schoolhouse model.



Sun Feb 17, 2013 3:17 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
DWill wrote:
Humans extended the helpless period of their young way beyond that of other animals, because brain development took so much longer. It's interesting that modern state societies extend this helplessness even farther out, farther than is necessary. Now we don't reach the age of adult independence until after four years of college, if then.


I've said before, imagine if you started from scratch and you proposed the modern college experience as your education plan. Four years of parties and studying things that have virtually zero relevance for your future. They would think you're insane.

Don't get me wrong -- I wish I could go back and do it again! And I have no problem with people learning things for their own sake, I do it all the time.



Sun Feb 17, 2013 5:08 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
Dexter wrote:

I've said before, imagine if you started from scratch and you proposed the modern college experience as your education plan. Four years of parties and studying things that have virtually zero relevance for your future. They would think you're insane.

Don't get me wrong -- I wish I could go back and do it again! And I have no problem with people learning things for their own sake, I do it all the time.

What would you do more of if you could go back, the partying or the studying?

Education seems to be one of the most conservative systems we have. It'll be slow to change, even though people talk about a need. Just from the financial angle--no way it can be worth $200,000 to go to an elite school, and even at state rates we might question college from the efficiency angle. I don't know what the answer is, but I've always thought that in general, 18-year-olds in our society aren't really ready to do the most with the college experience. A couple of years to work and focus on a plan would be beneficial, maybe national service of some kind. I know I went off to college just because it was expected of me, and I would've been better off waiting until I gained some maturity before going.



Sun Feb 17, 2013 5:55 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
DWill wrote:
What would you do more of if you could go back, the partying or the studying?


Haha, I really don't know. Ideally I'd do both more effectively.



Sun Feb 17, 2013 11:20 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
This is out of the blue, but I've just been reading about Barack Obama's college days at Occidental College in CA. That young man did some serious partying. I think he had an advantage that I would not have had, in that he was gifted with an ability not to have to work very hard to make good grades. So he could party effectively. I pretty much had to choose to do one or the other and chose studying as the more practical route.



Mon Feb 18, 2013 12:34 pm
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
In the sections on childbirth and infanticide, Daimond observes the following

Among the !Kung of South West Africa, a mother walks out of camp to give birth, initially with attendants, and at later births strives for the ideal of unassisted labour. This is a tradition that produces high mortality, reflecting social values that are adapted to food scarcity.

Piraha Indians of Brazil were reported as allowing a mother to die unassisted in labour due to breech birth because of their belief that people must be strong and get through difficulties on their own.

Infanticide is common in non-state societies, for disability, being a twin, or being born when an older sibling is under two.

Among the !Kung, a mother must inspect the baby and kill it if she finds it has birth defects.


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Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:19 am
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Post Re: Ch. 5: Bringing Up Children
When I was a kid, i lived in 6 Durham Street North Epping NSW.

It was a dead end street with 13 houses, and about 50 children. I knew them all. I went into every house and can remember everyone's name. Tucker (new), Perkins, Hamilton, Taylor, Peirans, Lee, Pierce, Swan, Caswell (new), Barker, Tulip, Moss, Miservey. The newcomers were the ones who moved in after I was born.

I had a special childhood. We had amazing trees which I and my friends climbed, willows, oak, liquid ambar, mulberry. gum. The mulberry was the best, like a maze, but eating red berries gave you a tummy ache. The rule was be home by dark.


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