Thumbs up for Boys Adrift: The Five Factors Driving the Growing Epidemic of Unmotivated Boys and Underachieving Young Men by Leonard Sax. Nonfiction/psychology.
A fascinating, easy-to-read look at what Sax thinks may contribute to the huge numbers of boys and young men who don’t want to get off their asses and have a life. (Wait, that’s not how he puts it….) The five topics covered are the ongoing alterations in our (American, that is) early education systems; video games; over-reliance on medications for ADHD; endocrine disruptors in our environment; and the lack of guidance and instruction from older males. The portrait he paints certainly rings true, and the reasons he gives for it are convincing. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in psychology – and definitely anyone who’s raising boys!
Colleges and universities now are scrambling to recruit qualified males. One mother told me that when it was time for her son to apply to college, she had some worries that turned out to be misplaced. Her recollection of her own college experiences thirty years ago led her to be concerned that admission offices would discriminate against her son, because, after all, he is a white male. “Instead,” she said in her e-mail to me, “I found that males today are on the receiving end of a kind of affirmative action for any boys who test well. This gets them into college, but doesn’t teach them how to cope with the bigger choices they will eventually have to face.”
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