The American Child - Elizabeth McCracken

The American Child

By Elizabeth McCracken

  • Release Date: 2003-12-07
  • Genre: Parenting


There is something essentially British in this point of view. The English mother, whatever her rank, tries to give her children in their home what she had in her childhood's home; as well as she is able, she copies what her mother did. The conditions of her life may be entirely different from those of her mother, her children may be unlike herself in disposition; yet she still holds to tradition in regard to their upbringing; she tries to make their home a reproduction of her mother's home. The American mother, whatever her station, does the exact opposite—she attempts to bestow upon her children what she did not possess; and she makes an effort to imitate as little as possible what her mother did. She desires her children to have that which she did not have, and for which she longed; or that which she now thinks so much better a possession than anything she did have. Her ambition is to train her children, not after her mother's way, but in accordance with "the most approved modern method". This method is apt, on analysis, to turn out to be merely the reverse side of her mother's procedure.