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Customer Review

on March 3, 2002
A really meaty read that had me fascinated from beginning to end. I hadn't heard of the 'Taking Children Seriously' (TCS) philosophy before reading this book, but the Rev. Fortune-Wood explains it really well. I think the book is an adaptation of her phd thesis, so it is quite academic in format, and, to an extent, content. However, the theoretical parts are balanced by examples of how TCS can work in everyday family situations. Some of these might have you flinging the book across the room in disbelief (e.g. staying awake in the night with quiet games and videos to respect a toddler's erratic sleeping pattern). But, good for Jan - why not challenge some of our society's horrible legacy of child-rearing/training.
I would have loved to have heard some of the author's anecdotes about putting TCS into practice. The theory is interesting, but I was drawn into a 'docusoap' kind of fascination with these families who live this approach. If she had gathered even a small sample of TCS families and quoted them, it would have added enormously to the book.
One of my favourite quotes of all time is thanks to this book: Our children are "autonomous human beings..... not control specimins who can become advertisements for how well we parented."
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4.5 out of 5 stars