The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do

The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do

How much credit do parents deserve when their children turn out well? How much blame when they turn out badly? Judith Rich Harris has a message that will change parents' lives: The "nurture assumption"-- the belief that what makes children turn out the way they do, aside from their genes, is the way their parents raise them--is nothing more than a cultural myth. This electrifying book explodes some of our unquestioned beliefs about children and parents and gives us a radically new view of childhood.

Harris examines with a fresh eye the lives of real children to show that it is what they experience outside the home, in the company of their peers, that matters most. Parents don't socialize children; children socialize children. With eloquence and humor, Judith Harris explains why parents have little power to determine the sort of people their children will become. The Nurture Assumption brings together insights from psychology, sociology, anthropology, primatology, and evolutionary biology to offer a startling new view of who we are and how we got that way.

Title:The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do
Edition Language:English
ISBN:9780684857077
Format Type:

    The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do Reviews

  • Skylar Burris

    This is a very long (and at times personal) review. If you would prefer to read a more concise and formal version of this review, click here.If Judith Rich Harris is right, there’s good news, and th...

  • Andrew Hill

    I read this book with great interest. It has been quite influential in the developmental psychology community, and its arguments are widely cited in other work on the subject. The book makes two argum...

  • K

    I wrestled with whether to give this book four stars or five. Despite its length and density, it was one of the most enjoyable reading experiences I’ve had in a while – stimulating, provocative, h...

  • Yousif Al Zeera

    This book is amazing. It completely (and breathtakingly) revolutionizes the way you think over parenting. Highly recommended by world renowned scientists like Steven Pinker and Robert Sapolsky. The bo...

  • Jurij Fedorov

    What a weird book. The main theory in this book has for a long time been proven correct. But not many know about it, so Harris is doing every scientist a great favor in sharing this very important mes...

  • Joel

    The main thesis of the book - that parents don't have much of an impact on the way children become socialized outside the home (that responsibility falls to the group they identify with) - was very co...

  • Tania

    I read this book because I am a child and youth care worker, and I think it is important to read materials that are influencing current thinking. As a practioner, I am glad I read this book, even thou...

  • Misty

    Very fun and insightful read. I found her ideas salve to the current climate of "expert" opinions on childrearing. ALthough I am not a darwinist (as she is), her alter-argument to the assumption that ...

  • Amith

    The book aims to debunk the 'Nurture Assumption', which claims that how children turn out in life depends strongly on their home environment. The author, through her 'Group Socialization Theory' claim...

  • Kathrynn

    There was so much covered in this thick, large paperback that it is difficult to decide what group of people it was intended for. Teachers and parents, definitely. I understand how this book came up i...