HOW TO DISCIPLINE WITH LOVE: From Crib to College by Fitzhugh Dodson

HOW TO DISCIPLINE WITH LOVE: From Crib to College

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Enlivened by catchy phrases (""The Law of the Soggy Potato Chip"") and personal example, these 400+ pages reiterate much of what's been said before in big sellers like Dodson's own (How to Parent, 1970; How to Father, 1974). Despite his insistence on a ""new approach""--a battery of strategies-most of this seems very familiar: positive reward systems, contracts, alternatives to punishments, feedback techniques for discussing feelings, family councils, and last resorts. Some of his recommendations are decidedly bizarre--biting a fourteen-month-old child (gently, of course) to curb his biting of other children--while others seem unresolved in his own mind: spanking is both ""a valuable discipline strategy for teaching good behavior to children"" and also ""a very poor and ineffective method of teaching."" He endorses karate education for all children, believes homosexuality can be cured, and advocates ""negative thinking"" in certain circumstances, a technique intended to improve self-esteem. What is distinctive is his recognition of changing family structures; ideas for single parents and stepparents (not footnotes but whole chapters) are offered in the same pithy vernacular. (Of stepchild visits: ""Hostility comes with the weekend."") This talk show regular may help himself to a large share of the prop-up-parent market, but his book is basically a prescription refilled for another season.

Pub Date: Oct. 28th, 1977
Publisher: Rawson--dist. by Atheneum