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Tuesday, January 25, 2005

"Why Johnny Won't Read"

Following up on my post re speech codes, here's an article from the WaPo that highlights another failure of our educational system the result of goofy, politically correct notions of sociological engineering. Apparently, boys no longer are offered books to read that have historically appealed to them (e.g. stories of valor and adventure) but instead are given "culturally relevant" literature: Unfortunately, the textbooks and literature assigned in the elementary grades do not reflect the dispositions of male students. Few strong and active male role models can be found as lead characters. Gone are the inspiring biographies of the most important American presidents, inventors, scientists and entrepreneurs. No military valor, no high adventure. On the other hand, stories about adventurous and brave women abound. Publishers seem to be more interested in avoiding "masculine" perspectives or "stereotypes" than in getting boys to like what they are assigned to read. What is revealing in this is the larger notion that male nature is inherently problematic while female nature is presumably superior. There is significant effort made to change the nature of boys (e.g. become less "violent" or "crude", become more "sensitive" and "verbal") but no parallel effort to change girls' nature or predispositions. Just an observation.

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