Book: Escape From Childhood The Needs and Rights of Children
Author: John Holt
Publication: Eklavya Publication
Price: Rs. 210
Plot: In this highly controversial book, John Holt talks about how we treat children. He says that we deliberately make childhood special. Finding them cute and adorable just because they are children, having expectations that they are pure and loving is actually ruining the children. According to him, children should be treated as adults, with their own rights, like the right to vote, right to have any property, right to legal and financial responsibility or any kind of right which we adults have.
According to him, we in the name of protecting children actually hurt them. We see them as cute, little munchkins, and in the midst of it, we forget that they have their own individuality. We keep them in a walled garden of childhood, and in this walled garden not only the children are unhappy but their parents are unhappy too. Children might not like being called cute, they may not like being cuddled or touched affectionately every time, they may not want their biological parents as their guardians, they may want to travel, live alone or anything which we overlook, just because they are children. They have their own thoughts, their own views, we may find them childish or absurd, but for them all that matters. We forget that they have their own potentials
John Holt has presented a very rare and controversial point to the limelight, and his views will make you think not only about the childhood but our society as a whole.
My Views: This is a very rare book, and indeed a very rare thought. Escape from childhood will actually show you a different side of childhood, the side which children see. It is rare, it is controversial and it is provocative. I would say that John Holt is a daring writer, surprisingly this book was first published in 1974. Presenting these thoughts at that time must be a bold act, and here we are still making childhood special for our children. The thoughts he has showcased in the book hits my mind hard, and why not after all he is talking about giving rights of using drugs, drive, travel, and choosing their own guardians. But it is not an easy walk for children. All these rights come with duties, he not only talk about rights but duties too. The thoughts are definitely not easily chewable and I won’t say that you will agree to all what he says in the book. But his thoughts will force to you think on the institution of childhood.
I totally enjoyed reading his thoughts, but this enjoyment is not the one with fun, I enjoyed it in a way that the book showed me a totally different way of looking at childhood. The book will actually force you to think.
Recommendations: Brilliantly written, showcasing thoughts in an easy language, I will just say that the book is a thought-provoking one, must read for parents, teachers and all those who deal with children.
Ratings: 5/5.1 Like