Monday, March 19, 2007

Perspectives on Ideas March 19, 2007

Childhood and Children
55 That was their pleasure! to quarrel who should hold a heap of warm hair [a dog], and each began to cry because both after struggling to get it, refused to take it. E. Brontë, Wuthering Heights.

151 Catherine: I wish I were a girl again, half savage and hardy, and free; and laughing at injuries, not maddening under them! E. Brontë, Wuthering Heights.

205 Barely past her childhood, it required but a glance to discover that she was one of those children, born and bred in neglect and vice, who have never known what childhood is…have entered at once upon the stern realities and miseries of life…tell them of hunger and the streets, beggary and stripes, the gin-shop, the station-house, and the pawn broker’s, and they will understand you. Dickens, Sketches by Boz.

107 Thornton wilder: Yet I am convinced that, except in a few extraordinary cases, one form or another of an unhappy childhood is essential to the formation of exceptional gifts. Cowley, ed., Writers at Work.

107 Thornton Wilder: ...the egocentric monsterhood of infancy.... Cowley, ed., Writers at Work.

224 Katharine Anthony on biography: Few persons can relate the story of their childhood without idealizing, or distorting, or overdramatizing the facts. Hull, ed. The Writer’s Book.

35 Medea: A person of sense ought never to have his children/ Brought up to be more clever than the average;/ For, apart from cleverness bringing them no profit/ It will make them objects of envy and ill will. Euripides, Medea.

60 Chorus: The childless, who never discover/ Whether children turn out as a good thing/ Or as something to cause pain, are spared/ Many troubles in lacking this knowledge. Euripides, Medea.

239 Someone must be intelligent for a child until it is ready to be intelligent for itself. Jewett, A Country Doctor.

197 M.L. Robinson on children's literature: Only as we give the children the truth about life can we expect any improvement in it. Hull, ed. The Writer’s Book.

433 Johnson: Correction, in itself, is not cruel; children, being not reasonable, can be governed only by fear. Boswell, Life of Johnson, Vol. 1.

51 In her mind, editing a book like David’s was somewhat like raising her two children: while they were growing up, the world was full of possibilities for them; now that they were out in the world—one a painter, the other an actress—they faced intense struggles and slender prospects of making their ways. “Maxwell Gherkin.” Gross, ed. Editors on Editing.

197 M.L. Robinson on children's literature: We deny youth the privilege of sadness or tragedy unless it is located as far back as Shakespeare. Hull, ed. The Writer’s Book.

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