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What does it mean to be young? In agrarian societies, babies often weren’t named until they were toddlers. Artists in the Middle Ages painted children as miniature adults (if they painted them at all). And the Victorians put them to work in coal mines. With help from historical treatises, children’s books and Mister Rogers, Katie Calautti explains why “kids will be kids” has meant so many different things over the centuries.

In recent years, “intensive parenting” has replaced tiger moms and helicopter dads as the most talked about trend in child-rearing. Intensive parents don’t just demand academic perfection and hover around in an effort to mitigate risk—they also plan their child’s extracurricular activities down to the minute, play with them and encourage them to communicate about everything happening in their heads. Think: parent as professor, personal assistant, playmate, therapist and disciplinarian. And while some believe this approach paves a smoother path

  • Words:
    Katie Calautti

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