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The Hurried Child

Discuss the ways in which Text 1 attempts to shape your response to the ideas presented about contemporary childhood.

The feature article “The Hurried Child” written by Kathleen McDonnell uses language conventions to put forth particular ideas about contemporary childhood. Contemporary childhood is presented as being negative in the article ‘The Hurried Child”, even the title of the article has negative connotations. The main ideas centre on the notion that children no longer have a traditional childhood and parents are encouraging them to act beyond their age in years. The authors attitude is that a traditional childhood was more beneficial in create caring adults that are vested in their community. Through the use of appealing to the audiences’ personal ideals, such as paternalistic values and authority, repetition and exclusive language the main ideas are presented.

The feature article The Hurried Child presents several ideas about contemporary childhood. The main idea introduced is that children no longer have the traditional childhood. Traditional childhood is defined as the expectations of a child having fun, playing sport and portraying innocence in the rawest manner. The author has appealed to traditional paternalistic values as well as through the use of repetition. Traditional paternalistic values concern particular ideals such as a parents’ role being to assist their child in their growth and creating a supportive and loving environment. Appeals to traditional paternalistic values are made to indicate that the author’s opinion is of benefit to the audience (target audience being parents) because the author seemingly knows best. “Our culture puts a greater value on work than it does family and community life.” This quote is a direct appeal to one’s values of traditional paternalism. The author’s idea that parents are now putting more value on their work would offend many, which the author has done intentionally to...
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