July 07, 2006

It takes a book to raise a boy

Two British brothers, Conn and Hal Iggulden, have a bestseller on their hands with The Dangerous Book for Boys.

A quote from an online review:

In celebrating old-fashioned boyhood and providing a blueprint on how to reclaim it, The Dangerous Book is revolutionary. It discards decades of social engineering that approaches children as being psychologically gender neutral. The book implicitly rebukes school texts that strip out gender references. Instead, it says 'boys will be boys'; they always have been, they always will be, and that's a good thing.

Thus The Dangerous Book achieves social revolution without preaching or politics; it does so in the name of fun.

The sort of fun promoted has also raised eyebrows. In a society that is preoccupied with safety, The Dangerous Book promotes activities in which boys are likely to get scuffed. This is a book for tree-climbers who occasionally pause to decipher enemy code or erupt into wood-wielding pirate fights.

There is a poignant quote from a father who (gasp!) actually let his kid use a pocket knife. That safety issue!

Via The Geek with a .45.


Jake Allsop said...

Hurrat for risk! Three cheers for danger! How else are children going to learn?
I don't know this book, but I intend to amazon it to my bookshelf right away.
PS Love your blog. May I put a link on my blog (oldscroteshome)?

Chas S. Clifton said...

Certainly. Link away. I'm delighted. And thanks for reminding me that I too need to buy the book!

Jane Shevtsov said...

Don't know about the gender stuff -- I'd buy it and I'll bet plenty of girls have! Of course, I also read the local library's copy of The Boy Scout Handbook twice as a kid.

BTW, why do Boy Scouts do much cooler things than Girl Scouts?