Wise Words: How Susan Isaacs Changed Parenting

1st Edition

Caroline Vollans

Routledge
Published October 26, 2017
Reference - 234 Pages - 15 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9781138096790 - CAT# Y336079

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Summary

"Harassed" writes: "Your answers to correspondents are exceedingly clear, and when I read them I say, ‘That is just the answer I should think of’, though I believe I should have great difficulty when it came actually to putting it into words! However, I cannot answer my own problems, so will you please help me?" (20 August 1930)

This much-needed collection brings together the columns of parenting adviser Ursula Wise, "agony aunt" for The Nursery World between 1929 and 1936, and pseudonym for the eminent educationalist and pioneering psychoanalyst Susan Isaacs.

Wise’s replies, informed by theories in education, psychology and psychoanalysis, provide an insight into the development of modern, child-centred attitudes to parenting, with remarkably fresh and relevant advice. The letters are passionate, urgent, occasionally provocative, sometimes funny and always thoughtful. Topics from behaviour and temperament, anxieties and phobias, to play and education are explored and each theme is introduced and contextualised in contemporary parenting approaches.

Bringing pivotal theories from the fields of education, child psychology and psychoanalysis into dialogue, this is an essential read for early years practitioners, teachers, course leaders and those studying in the field of early years education and child psychoanalysis. The continued relevance of Isaacs’ advice for modern parenting also makes this an enjoyable and informative read for parents. It is also an excellent resource for those interested in social history and the little known contributions made by women pioneers.

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