Skip to comments.Boys turning to action-packed video games because books are ‘too girly’ for them, says…
Posted on 04/21/2014 8:01:40 AM PDT by Olog-hai
Boys are being put off reading because of the influence women have on childrens literature, says an award-winning childrens author.
Jonathan Emmett warned that childrens books were too girly because of the influence of mostly female panels of editors, publishers, reviewers and judges.
One publishing companys research suggested women bought 95 percent of picture books for children, he added.
The writer believes boys are being starved of what they enjoy in books, such as swashbuckling pirates, battles, or technical details about spaceships, and so are driven to more action-packed video games instead.
(Excerpt) Read more at dailymail.co.uk ...
Not like there arent plenty of books in print and online that are non-girly. Its far more than that; it has to do with family structure too, or the lack thereof.
Boys turning to action-packed video games because books are too girly for them, says award-winning childrens author
It’s true, really. The feminization of America instigated by the radical leftists and teachers unions, trying to turn boys into girls and girls into boys is going to produce a backlash of some sort. Violence is an instinct inherent to us, and we need to practice it in a controlled form to remain mentally balanced. Removing all sports from schools that show a hint of simulated violence is not going to have the expected result.
Video games also interact and engage young boys’ attention better.
I was lucky - I was read to bed each night with Kipling’s poems, Wind in the Willows and Grimm’s Fairy Tales. Video games didn’t exist, though I tried to “invent” analog versions of them. I got my “interaction” with bicycles, toy guns, and then with BB guns.
The Harry Potter series was written for a woman yet has tremendous, intricate detail to interest boys.
Give a kid a copy of...say, the “Narnia” series. Sword fights, action-packed battles, betrayal, redemption....what more could a young imagination want?
(Added, naturally, with good, healthy parenting and real-life activities.)
Red Badge of Courage
Call Of The Wild
Adventures of Tom Sawyer (and then Huckleberry Finn
Lord of the Flies
And that's just scratching the surface of what's out there for boys to read.
Give the boy a copy of Heinlein
Or Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, Treasure Island, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Kidnapped, etc. I read them all multiple times when I was a child. Science fiction has hundreds of well written, action packed books.
What boys need are reprints of Rafael Sabatini books and books by P. C. Wren (Beau Geste), along with some of the Horatio Hornblower series.
These helped keep me from going crazy in my teen years.
Boys will be boys. Unless raised like a caring, feeling, sub human metrosexual. Then, if they get a taste of “boy type stuff” they’ll naturally gravitate to it.
"... And there was a time in this country, a long time ago, when reading wasn't just for fags and neither was writing. People wrote books and movies, movies that had stories so you cared whose ass it was and why it was farting, and I believe that time can come again!"
Darn it, you beat me to it.
Boys are chauvinist pigs if they dare to take any pride in being a man, or show any interest in manly things.
This is pretty true. My 6 year old son can’t wait to play war and shoot toy guns when he gets home from school. It’s called being boys. ;-)
It’s largely the lure of electronics. My 2yo granddaughter knows more about how an iphone works than I do.
school libraryies keeping out the good stuff??
Probably true. Solution? Don't read "Childrens' Books".
Most are rubbish, anyway, "girly" or no.
One wonders if the person quoted has been to a library and seen what’s available. I’m at the library with my children almost every week. There are plenty of books available on topics that interest stereotypical boys. Detailed studies of all kinds of animals. The “Eyewitness” science and technology series. “Ranger’s Apprentice,” “Vampirates.”
However, if they haven’t been taught to read effectively, the selection is not going to do them much good. It’s much easier to cry “Feminism!” than it is to address an educational system designed to prevent the achievement of reading fluency.
Read all the books you mentioned, plus there was a series of novels about a baseball team. Then I found science fiction.
so was Gregor The Overlander
It also has a lot to do with the books chosen for school reading lists.
Video games have advanced to the point (graphically and in sheer size/time commitment) that they basically ‘pick your path’ novels.
Now pushing 50, I have probably read close to 5-6oo books in the sci-fi/horror/fantasy genres and in my experience, earlier games like Xenogears/Xenosaga, which were ultra heavy morality/philosophical exercises with space ships and sentient computers have set the stage for today’s epics.
The stories in modern RPGs are action heavy, deep and require thought. It ain’t all Angry Birds. Modern computer power has unlocked an immersion factor that goes beyond the printed page...but REQUIRE the very same writing. If the story sucks, the game sucks. and no big booms will save it.
AND perhaps most importantly, there are still old school ideas and attitudes that have not been totally PCd to death in them. That unfortunately is changing because libs have been working their crap into even the best games.
WBill Jr. is like every other boy. He likes superheroes, and anything military.
It's tough to find books / movies that have these themes that are age-appropriate. When it comes to my kid, I'm not a fan of nilhistic superheroes where you can't tell the good guys from the bad. Neither am I a fan of gritty, realistic war movies where every 3rd word starts with "F" and people get blown graphically apart in spectacular and lingering fashion. Not for pre-teens, not in my house.
So we watch a lot of 40's and 50's movies. We recently caught "Wake Island" with Bill Bendix...that was a real barn-burner.
Books, especially, are hard to find. When I was WBill Jr's age, it was a cinch to find anything on WW I and II. It was mostly age-appropriate - mostly - and readily available at both the local and school libraries.
Not so much anymore, at least around these parts. Books around here are more along the lines of "Tamiko Paints a Rainbow", and "LeShaun and Hernando Scrapbook For Diversity".
Fortunately, I've got a pretty good memory for what *I* used to read, and the internet makes out-of-print books just a few clicks away. :-)
These old classics are just that....classics....and they belong in a library...not taking up "learning" time in school.
I always thought biographies/autobiographies was the way to go. Diverse with a lot of messages. But I don't see these on school lists. Most lists that I have seen were garbage...and promoting a certain author. "Follow the money".
Even back in the 1970s, the "children's books" provided in schools were pretty lame. Dr. Suess, "Where The Wild Things Are", "Jonathon Livingston Seagull" and other crap like that. It's really up to the parents to instill good reading habits with their children. My mother would take me to the library every Saturday morning and make me borrow at least four books every time. Eventually I discovered there was a lot in those stacks worth reading and I've been reading books on a regular basis ever since.
Nothing better for a boy and I would make The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress required reading in high school and dump all the "white guys suck" training manuals.
Yes, I’ve always thought that violent video games are not “dangerous” in themselves, but I also understand how someone with unhealthy violent tendencies (e.g. the Columbine killers) can be drawn to them. So it’s a two-way street. Typically the violence is just part of the story plot, and is not inappropriately gory.
When I was a kid, my mom read stories like “Jack the Giant Killer” to us. I suppose that would be parental abuse today. If you don’t teach your son to wear a dress the left might call it damaging to his sense of “gender choice”.
Early Heinlein, I’d suggest, pretty strongly.
J. K. Rowling's Harry Potter series was kind of unique not only because of the great and complex storytelling, but the fact the novels appealed to both male and female readers (readers of both genders wer not ashamed to be fans of Rowling's novels).
Zane Grey and Louis L’Amour should be on every boy’s bookshelf!
Boys have the inborn male aggressive drive that seeks to affect the external environment. Reading is passive and internal, so unless it engages the imagination and offers active characters to identify with, it has relatively less attraction for boys, other things being equal. It has always been thus.
I didn’t learn to read from comic books. Believe it or not, I didn’t read many comic books until college and later! (Did read the comic section of the paper though!)
I learned from Dick and Jane and Spot and Mittens.
I did do a lot of my early reading the Colby weapon book and the Landmark Biographies and Histories.
The Brothers Grimm and some of the ‘classic’ kids tales are THE most violent things ever written. Kids are getting munched on and torn to shreds around every corner, people dying/being killed, imprisoned, tortured ect.
I highly people read the originals again through adult eyes and it is an eye opening experience.
I always took the approach with my kid of watching TV/movies with her and explaining things on levels she was ready to grasp. I never limited her viewing as many parents do. I just gave her a reality check on what she was watching. Lots of people oppose that but oh well. It worked great for us.
I used to hear from people how much more mature she was than other kids her age. And I think it was because she wasn’t wrapped in bubble wrap from reality. She grew up into a responsible adult that never donned a Freddie Kruger glove and hacked up children...Brothers Grimm style ;)
My two older boys (combat Marines) said it was a sissy book series.
I never thought of that but quite true
My daughters don’t play war and shoot em up vid games like the lads do
I think they are referring to what is pushed by schools and culture and those books you and I grew up on are no longer pushed
Its the PC crap
BTW...I only allow Xbox and pswhatever to be up on weekends
No..I don’t play...a middle aged man
I find it silly
I have spare time I prefer adult time
I gathered a passing knowledge of all the classics from Classics Illustrated
It was invaluable.
I loved them
Mine too. Been playing Battlefield multi-player for about a year. He does seem to be more interested in transport though, shuttling troops from the spawn areas to the front lines.
The thing about violence in fairy tales is that kids know it’s just a story. They may also include questionable connotations, but ambiguously and lost on most adults, let alone kids. But I think you’re right that overprotecting a kid by limiting everything they’re allowed to see is keeping them in a bubble and not letting them mature. It’s the same as someone living in a real bubble: they never develop an immunity to germs when they’re never exposed to them.
My mom, bless her heart, thought Dr. Suess books were the best things ever, and she bought "Cat in the Hat" well after I had lost any interest in such drivel. But I'm sure glad she did, it turns out it was a true first edition with dust jacket that was worth thousands to a collector.
Yeah, I play some multi online with him. Kind of a father son thing for the 21st century lol. I setup a minecraft server so I can monitor things and keep the language kid friendly ;-)
Boys are never going to want to read about getting in touch with their emotions, and sharing their feelings, intimacy,and being eager for commitment.
I may be showing my age here but does anyone remember “The Hardy Boy” series of books which was a popular series in the 50s and 60s and aimed at young boys. Man, I loved those and read every single one.
Anything by Hemingway
I have all the Tarzan, Venus and Martian series, Edgar Rice Burroughs books, Man from Uncle, Richard Blade series Jeffery Lord, time travel, fights, the whole boy works not for under Teens, series. Plus my romantic historical ones, for a girl I had a wide reading range. Dr Kildare, Superman, Iron-man, Avengers, X Men, were myn comic book reading. Dragon Riders of Pern, Anne McCaffery, Clan of the Cave Bear, MM Auell, I’ve read Anne’s other series too, Both these female writers tell very detailed stories boys would love.
I was not Nancy Drew fan to say the least. I liked reading about Pasteur, Madame Curie, Florence Nightingale, etc as a teen.
The books assigned by women teachers are mainly to blame. They are usually all about feelings. How incredibly boring is that.
That’s just boys excuse mongering.
We had Germans and Japs, my son had cars, trucks, and tools, the kid has Zombies, a guy thing.
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