By Gene Myers
Read or Download The Significance of Children and Animals: Social Development and Our Connections to Other Species, Second Revised Edition PDF
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Additional resources for The Significance of Children and Animals: Social Development and Our Connections to Other Species, Second Revised Edition
John Locke, for example, agreed with Descartes’s physics and physiology but rejected the idea of a soul possessed of innate ideas. All knowledge comes from experience, he insisted. indd 35 8/25/2006 3:29:21 PM 36 Chapter II but from their ability to kill each other, which critics complained made men more barbarous than beasts (Ashcraft, 1972, pp. 150–151). 8 In response to the breakdown of the old order, people tried to strengthen the traditional distinctions where they seemed most problematic, for example, I suggest, in the themes of childhood animality.
Following the philosopher Karen Hanson (1986), sensitivity to social context, plus imagination—founded on the ability to ﬁnd pattern, coherence, or invariants in experience—are prerequisites for language to produce self-awareness. But by the same token, other patterns of action besides verbal ones can do so also. And this is exactly what occurs in children’s deliberate imitation of, and pretending to be, animals. The child must self-consciously diﬀerentiate the self from the other to typify it in play.
Hall” as having said, “Love of animals is inborn. The child that has had no pets is to be pitied” (p. 206). He then cites a 1902 work by C. F. Hodge, an educational expert, who is even more explicit: “The pet animal is thus for the child, as it was for the race, the key to the door into knowledge and dominion over all animal life. . Its fundamental character and value for education are evinced in the passion of children for pets; and as in the race, so in the life of the child, it should be made the most of as a step toward civilization” (p.