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The Gardener and the Carpenter Audiobook

The Gardener and the Carpenter: What the New Science of Child Development Tells Us About the Relationship Between Parents and Children

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Publisher's Summary

Caring deeply about our children is part of what makes us human. Yet the thing we call "parenting" is a surprisingly new invention. In the past 30 years, the concept of parenting and the multibillion-dollar industry surrounding it have transformed child care into obsessive, controlling, and goal-oriented labor intended to create a particular kind of child and therefore a particular kind of adult.

In The Gardener and the Carpenter, pioneering developmental psychologist and philosopher Alison Gopnik argues that the familiar 21st-century picture of parents and children is profoundly wrong - it's not just based on bad science, it's bad for kids and parents, too. Drawing on the study of human evolution and her own cutting-edge scientific research into how children learn, Gopnik shows that although caring for children is profoundly important, it is not a matter of shaping them to turn out a particular way. Children are designed to be messy and unpredictable, playful and imaginative, and very different both from their parents and from each other. The variability and flexibility of childhood lets them innovate, create, and survive in an unpredictable world. "Parenting" won't make children learn - but caring parents let children learn by creating secure, loving environments.

©2016 Alison Gopnik (P)2016 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"Narrator Erin Bennett commendably presents this unique audiobook on raising children. Alison Gopnik, an expert on children's development, lambasts the current style of parenting, which she calls the 'carpenter method' because it relies on an established blueprint (as in making a chair) to produce a successful but predictable child who also excels at test taking. Gopnik prefers the 'gardener approach,' which gives the child love, encouragement, and freedom to play and imagine, which she says results in a more creativity. Bennett's delivery of Gopnik's passionate argument is appealing and easy to understand. She also captures Gopnik's subtle humor and supporting quotes from experts. The moving conclusion comes full circle as it discusses end-of-life commitments that adult children have to their elderly parents." (AudioFile Magazine)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.3 (7 )
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3.4 (7 )
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Story
3.4 (7 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Afshin Iraninejad 04/11/2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Poor story, well read"

    Although the title suggests telling us about scientific side of child and parent relationship and it does while annoyingly mixing facts with lots of personal individual experiences of the writer.
    This book enchanted me when I read the introduction, when explaining about carpenter and gardner parents, difference of parenting and being a part, when she elegantly put pieces together why we have children in this age, in this world.
    But the more I read, the less she explained the reason of having children and simply stoped after one simple fact that we have children because we love them. Almost entire book is about science of having baby and less and less carpenter and gardner parents.
    I think the writer was lost from the very subject of book, from very enchanting, smart introduction through out the whole book.
    It is a good book to realise new findings in science related to babies and how they grow up BUT extremely poor to make any original point about parenting and being a parent.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Thandi Lamprecht
    29/10/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Fascinating"

    Best book in the genre I've "read". Fascinating and entertaining from start to finish. I highly rec

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • MoonOwl
    23/10/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Equal parts science and wisdom"

    The best chapter is the last one, in which Alison Gopnik weaves together the science of child development with philosophy and policy making.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Chris
    19/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great book about modern parenting misconceptions"

    Really great book that takes you through historical and traditional child rearing ideals to modern day misunderstandings. It was an enlightening read on how childrens' brains develop and how wrong our traditional ideas of this are. It's a very short book but touches on many examples and interesting view points. It had a good flow but not many action points to take away, except that I feel I need to read more about the subject!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Xuan Qin
    16/09/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "good book. could be better written though"

    more of a social standpoint describing the big picture. like the general opinion of the author however not very easy to read

    1 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    29/08/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Not much insight"

    Sites tons of research and offers little New or insightful information. Very long winded. This book could have been shortened by 90%. Author needs to consider her audience and have a writing style that suits them. Parents don't have time to read hours of pages just to get to a few good points.

    1 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Viktor Hanak
    02/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Horrible"
    Would you try another book from Alison Gopnik and/or Erin Bennett?

    No


    What was most disappointing about Alison Gopnik’s story?

    It is just a complete waste of time.


    What didn’t you like about Erin Bennett’s performance?

    performance is ok I guess, it is probably hard for the narrator to work with that material.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Gardener and the Carpenter?

    Half of the book at the minimum.


    Any additional comments?

    No other comments.

    0 of 2 people found this review helpful

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