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When it comes to parenting, more isn't always better-but it is always more tiring

In Japan, a boy sleeps in his parents' bed until age ten, but still shows independence in all other areas of his life. In rural India, toilet training begins one month after infants are born and is accomplished with little fanfare. In Paris, parents limit the amount of agency they give their toddlers. In America, parents grant them ever more choices, independence, and attention.

Given our approach to parenting, is it any surprise that American parents are too frequently exhausted?

Over the course of nearly fifty years, Robert and Sarah LeVine have conducted a groundbreaking, worldwide study of how families work. They have consistently found that children can be happy and healthy in a wide variety of conditions, not just the effort-intensive, cautious environment so many American parents drive themselves crazy trying to create. While there is always another news article or scientific fad proclaiming the importance of some factor or other, it's easy to miss the bigger picture: that children are smarter, more resilient, and more independent than we give them credit for.

Do Parents Matter? is an eye-opening look at the world of human nurture, one with profound lessons for the way we think about our families.



About the Author

Robert Levine

Robert Levine grew up in Brooklyn New York. After graduating high school in 1963, he enrolled at UC Berkeley where he says he had the blind good luck to experience the sixties from hippy central. After Berkeley, he went on to get a master's degree in clinical psychology from Florida State University in 1969 and a Ph.D. in personality/social psychology from New York University in 1974. He's been a Professor of Psychology at California State University, Fresno ever since, with stints as Chairperson of the Department and as Associate Dean of the College of Science and Mathematics. Over the years he's also served as a Visiting Professor at Universidade Federal Fluminense in Niteroi, Brazil, at Sapporo Medical University in Japan, and at Stockholm University in Sweden. He has won awards for both his teaching and research. He has published many articles in professional journals as well as articles in trade periodicals such as Discover, American Demographics, The New York Times, Utne Reader, and American Scientist. His book, A Geography of Time (Basic Books, 1997) , was the subject of feature stories around the world, including Newsweek, The New York Times Magazine, CNN, the BBC, ABC's Primetime, and NPR's All Things Considered and Marketplace. It has been translated into six languages. His book, The Power of Persuasion: How We're Bought and Sold (John Wiley & Sons, 2003) , has been translated into eight languages. An updated, paperback revision was published in 2006. He is outgoing President of the Western Psychological Association and a Fellow in the American Psychological Association.(Website: www.boblevine.net) .



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