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Could We Learn From Hunter-Gatherers?

In light of today’s fast-paced, demanding world— replete with busy parenting schedules that require adults to juggle work, home, and personal obligations, and policies that often place children in the back seat, strapped down while along for the ride, one might wonder about the way things used to be, centuries ago.

Small scale societies and the hunter-gatherer lifestyle have worked at least tolerably well for the nearly 100,000 year history of behaviorally modern humans. Many of those children develop into emotionally secure, self-confident, curious, autonomous members of their villages.

Might there be something to learn from their ways of being with, and connecting to their kids? How does the learning take place, one might wonder, when parents don’t impose their wills on children, despite tribal use of open fires for warmth, and sharp objects left within arm’s reach of their young children? What would happen if we let go of just some of the expectations of our kids promulgated by Western Society?

Take a look at the full text of Jared Diamond’s article, published just last week in Newsday and please share with us your thoughts!