January 15, 2009

Thank goodness I am a 70s kid

I realise how far we come when I come across things that were from previous generations.

My hands by Aliki was first published in 1962.

The book as suggested by the title is all about people's hands and what we do with hands.

It seemed like a nice picture book to shared with a preschooler. It continues innocently into this other page, showing the children's fingers.

Look closely at the boy on the right and his fingers in the next picture...

Seems like the publisher who published this in the 60s is quite poorly informed, as the raised middle finger have found written references to it as far back as ancient Greek and Roman times. The gesture's sexual meaning has always been roughly the same, and it has always been
considered rude. It is quite fascinating what children learned in the 60s.

The revised edition published in 1992 unfortunately left out this page :) It has been updated to take a more pre-schooler's scientific approach of the body where it describes parts of the hands and what we do with them.

Talking about the 60s, I am watching this TV series "Mad Men" set in the 60s about ad execs in New York. It recently won the best TV drama in the Golden Globes. The show gives a glimpse into life in 60s, where so many of the unPC things today are all treated as a very matter of fact because that was how it was like then.

One of the LOL moments was how they treated children back then. In one of the episodes, Betty Draper and a pregnant friend were smoking cigarettes. One of their kids enter with with the plastic from the dry cleaners over her head. And the mother's concern was, "If my clothes are wrinkled, I'm going to get very angry."

There was another one where the kids were running through the house. One kid's father slaps a boy, who is not his own for almost knocking something over. The kid's real parent was actually thankful and said, "Thank you for disciplining my child." Few parents in this day and age will hit their kids like that, what more be allowed to hit somebody else's kid.

The TV show has lots of other OMG inducing moments on sexism, anti-Semitism, racism, on top of its smoking and drinking pregnant woman. It's really quite interesting how some things have changed since the 60s.

See the video on the Top 10 un PC moments in "Mad Men".


Merryn said...

oooo.. thank goodness i AM a 70s kid too! otherwise.. dunno what is to become of ME!.. hehhe..

KoLe said...

I love this post!
and can't agree with you more!

let R watched a very old cartoon series from one of my fav animator.. realised its no longer pc :(

times were simpler then....

(i am sounding more and more like my mum.....)

Rachel said...

Merryn - Every generation of children can be so different the other. Sometimes I cannot be too certain that our parenting skills have truly advanced from 20 years before.

Kole - Times were simpler and for sure children were much easier to take care of. Don't know if it is alway good to know so much now. Probably for the people in the past, ignorance can be such bliss.