Childhood Lost: How American Culture Is Failing Our Kids / Edition 1

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Overview

Experts from across disciplines join forces here to focus attention on current American culture and the devastating effects it is having on its children. From children developing surprising physical maturity and sexual awareness at younger and younger ages, to those estranged when television and computer screens replace family time, and those warped by national junk food/fast food habits bringing an explosion of obesity and diabetes among boys and girls, this book takes a harsh look at the results of American social norms. The damage being done by governmental policies is examined, including inadequate parental leave, a minimum wage that is not a living wage, unregulated day care, and a public education system that delivers inferior education to poor children. A call to action, this is a work from some of the best-known child experts nationwide. Every person who has or cares about a child will find this of interest.

Experts from across disciplines join forces here to focus attention on current American culture and the devastating effects it is having on its children. From children developing surprising physical maturity and sexual awareness at younger and younger ages, to those estranged when television and computer screens replace family time, and those warped by national junk food/fast food habits bringing an explosion of obesity and diabetes among boys and girls, this book takes a harsh look at the results of American social norms. It highlights the damage being done by governmental policies, including inadequate parental leave, a minimum wage that is not a living wage, unregulated day care, and a public education system that delivers inferior education to poor children. A call to action, this is a work from some of the best known child experts nationwide. Every person who has or cares about a child—or the future of U.S. socity— will find this of interest.

Most experts writing about childhood address issues from their own particular perspective. This work draws together a team of top scholars from across fields. They connect the dots in engaging and clear essays. Altogether, they demonstrate that the problems facing children today come from an underlying crisis of adult values, and they suggest that individuals must join forces to turn back this crisis.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Olfman, a clinical psychologist and professor of developmental psychology at Point Park University, presents ten essays that raise an alarm about the consequences of accepted social norms for American children."

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Reference & Research Book News

"A powerful collection of essays that demonstrate how our society is conducting a war on children. Examines media violence, commercialization and the sexualization of childhood, obesity, and failed government and corporate policies on parental leave, minimum wage, and unregulated day care. A useful handbook for educators, parents, and policymakers."

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Rethinking Schools/Rethinking Schools Online

"In this powerful narrative about the challenges facing children and their families in the US in the 21st century, clinical psychologist and associate professor of developmental psychology Olfman does an excellent job of bringing writers together to help readers explore a wide variety of issues, including debates on culturally relevant topics ranging from the educational dilemmas caused by No Child Left Behind and the developmental impact of media violence and childhood obesity to the commercialization and sexualization of children. This book is an easy read, providing political, social, moral, and empirical perspectives. It will be both disturbing and thought-provoking to anyone professionally or personally concerned about the issues currently facing children and their families in the US. Recommended. General collections, professionals, and practitioners."

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Choice

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275981396
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/1/2005
  • Series: Childhood in America
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 242
  • Product dimensions: 6.14 (w) x 9.21 (h) x 0.56 (d)

Meet the Author

SHARNA OLFMAN is Clinical Psychologist and Associate Professor at Point Park University, where she is the founding director of the annual Childhood and Society Symposium Series. She is Series Editor for the Praeger series, Childhood in America. Her earlier works include All Work and No Play: How Educational Reforms are Harming our Preschoolers (Praeger, 2003).

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Table of Contents

Introduction
1 The natural history of children 3
2 Why parenting matters 19
3 The war against parents 57
4 The impact of media violence on developing minds and hearts 89
5 The commercialization of childhood 107
6 Big food, big money, big children 123
7 So sexy, so soon : the sexualization of childhood 137
8 Techno-environmental assaults on childhood in America 155
9 "No child left" : what are schools for in a democratic society? 185
10 Where do the children play? 203
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