12 Sep 2006

Children under threat

'British children are being "poisoned" by a culture of processed food, computer games and over-competitive education, a group of academics and authors claimed today.'

There is news of a letter from 110 health experts today saying that children are more likely to be over weight, depressed and inactive. The danger is that we say, when I was young life was good and get out our copy of The Dangerous Book for Boys' (it looks pretty boring to me). We cannot reject modernity, for example, I remember reading somewhere that children spending too much time looking at books instead of being active was cited as a problem once. Video games may be are not all bad.

However, capitalism sells us myths and legends and stories to sell products. Star Wars, King Kong, etc are vehicles to sell play stations, McDonalds uses disney. Our subjectivity and identity is shaped by the system of consumer capitalism.

Education too is commodified, standarised, with an emphasis on ever increasing productivity.

Life comes second to commerce.

so even if capitalism is ecologically sustainable, the fact that it controls our lifes and invades the personal sphere is a problem.

Five things I did with sons on Sunday.

1. making pizzas.
2. making spanish omelette.
3. Reading 'Does maggie matter' from the Simpsons and philosophy.
4. Building a mobile compost bin and filling it full of waste from neighbours.
5. Watched Nosferatu 1922 version (a bit heavy to be honest).

1 comment:

Stuart Jeffery said...

Derek, while it is reasonable to suggest that we live in a new and changing society and that the nostaligic view may be tainted, I still think there is truth in what the letter said. I am as guilty as the next parent of over protection and I certainly feel I should let my daughter take more risks.
Also: Sunday - made pizza with daughter and prepared Sunday dinner with her. We then helped out on a Fairtrade stall at local 'Mela'.

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