Kenneth Keniston

Kenneth Keniston

It is misleading to discuss recent changes in family life without emphasizing the fact that for generations some Americans have had to raise children under particularly appalling pressures. Although much of what is worrying American parents is shared by them all, the most grievous problems are those that especially afflict a large minority--the poor, the nonwhite and, in various ways, the parents of handicapped children.More Kenneth Keniston quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
One current reaction to change in families, for example, is the proposal for more "education for parenthood," on the theory that this training will not only teach specific skills such as how to change diapers or how to play responsively with toddlers, but will raise parents' self-confidence at the same time. The proposed cure, in short, is to reform and educate the people with the problem.More Kenneth Keniston quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
Parents still have primary responsibility for raising children, but they must have the power to do so in ways consistent with their children's needs and their own values.... We must address ourselves less to the criticism and reform of parents themselves than to the criticism and reform of the institutions that sap their self-esteem and power.More Kenneth Keniston quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
Confronted with the unhappy facts of exclusion, we sometimes reassure ourselves by telling stories: the poor boys who made it, theblacks who became a "credit to their race," the women elected to high office, the handicapped who made "useful contributions" to our society.... Just as we believe in the self-sufficient family, we also believe that any child with enough grit and ability can escape poverty and make a rewarding life. But these stories and beliefs clearly reflect the exceptions.More Kenneth Keniston quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]
In the early nineteenth century, the doctrine of self-sufficiency came to apply to families as well as individuals.... The familybecame a special protected place, the repository of tender, pure, and generous feelings (embodied by the mother) and a bulwark and bastion against the raw, competitive, aggressive, and selfish world of commerce (embodied by the father).... In performing this protective task, the good family was to be as self-sufficient as the good man.More Kenneth Keniston quotes [03/29/2018 05:03:36]

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