sábado, 19 de diciembre de 2015

Modern society is infected with sentimentality—“the cult of feeling”—and it’s screwing up our education system.

"Sentimentality": Is It Screwing Up Education?

by Daniel Lattier

Modern society is infected with sentimentality—“the cult of feeling”—and it’s screwing up our education system.

That’s the thesis of British cultural commentator Theodore Dalrymple in his book Spoilt Rotten: The Toxic Cult of Sentimentality.

According to Dalrymple, sentimentality has its roots in Romanticism and aRousseauian view of children as having been born in a state of original grace. The corollary of this view is that successful raising of children involves letting them develop organically and not imposing too many hardships:
“The Romantics emphasized the innocence and inherent goodness of children, compared with the moral degradation of adults. The way to make better adults, then, was to find the right way of preserving their innocence and goodness. The right education became the prevention of education.”
In education, this sentimental view has manifested itself through the elimination of traditional methods of learning deemed unpleasant to children. Thus, arguesDalrymple, we have seen schools increasingly dispense with methods such as phonics, routine, memorization, and repetition in favor of “whole word reading,”spontaneity, and subjects that are “relevant” to students’ lives.

Based on years of experience with modern students, Dalrymple concludes the following about an education system permeated by sentimentality:
“It leaves many children unable to read properly and perform simple calculations. This in turn results in enclosing such children in the social conditions in which they find themselves at birth, for an inability to read, and a poor basic education, are almost (though perhaps not quite) impossible to rectify later in life.”

Do you agree with Dalrymple? Is today’s system more concerned with entertaining students rather than educating them? Do teachers need to reincorporate traditional learning methods in their classrooms?

Spoilt Rotten: The Toxic Cult of Sentimentality

by Theodore Dalrymple

How Britain is Ruined By its Children. In 'Spoilt Rotten', well-known social commentator Theodore Dalrymple grinds his axe at our child-centric culture where children have become the yardstick of everything we do - safe driving, education, taking of responsibility (none), sentimentality (everywhere). 

In this forensic polemic of maudlin popular culture from X-factor to Super Nannies, Dalrymple wields his scalpel at all the modern sacred cows. Children will be speechless, for once, and parents will hang their heads in shame!
  • Not since Christopher Hitchens assault on Mother Theresa have so many sacred cows been slaughtered in such a short volume.' Spectator '
  • One of our most celebrated essayists.' Toby Young, Mail on Sunday 
  • '[A] cultural highlight.' Observer 
  • 'Surgical demolition.' Guardian 

  • In this perceptive and witty book, Theodore Dalrymple unmasks the hidden sentimentality that is suffocating public life. 
  • Under the multiple guises of raising children well, caring for the underprivileged, assisting the less able and doing good generally, we are achieving quite the opposite "€“for the single purpose of feeling good about ourselves. 
  • Dalrymple takes the reader on both an entertaining and at times shocking journey through social, political, popular and literary issues as diverse as child tantrums, aggression, educational reform, honour killings, sexual abuse, Che Guevara, Eric Segal, Romeo and Juliet, the McCanns, public emotions and the role of suffering, and shows the perverse results when we abandon logic in favour of the cult of feeling.

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