Why do we turn out the way we do? Maybe it's our genes, or maybe it's the way we were raised. We cherish the belief that next to DNA, mom and dad are the biggest influences on a child's life. A new, controversial study, however, says peers and not parents, decide how kids turn out. In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, do parents matter?
M.I.T. psychologist Steven Pinker talks with Judith Strasser about the argument made by Judith Harris in her book "The Nurture Assumption." Harris claims that peers matter more than parents in shaping a child's character. Also, writer Scott Sanders tells Jim Fleming that he discovered he had passed his own pessimism about the world on to his children without giving them any strategies for finding hope. His book "Hunting for Hope: A Father's Journey" is intended as a corrective.SEGMENT 2:
Psychiatrists Nadia and Daniel Stern are the authors of "The Birth of the Mother." They tell Steve Paulson that a woman becomes a mother long before the birth of her child, and that mothers' instinctive behavior is not always supported by modern society and medicine.SEGMENT 3:
Marion Winik talks about how her sons saved her life, describes the "yellow meal" and explains how she deals with "bad mommy days." Winik is a regular comentator for NPR and the author of "The Lunch Box Chronicles: Notes from the Parenting Underground."Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 98-09-13-A.
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