Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Friday, October 07, 2011

Raising a child doesn't take a village

New University of Michigan research shows:
It doesn't take a village to raise a child after all, according to University of Michigan research.

"In the African villages that I study in Mali, children fare as well in nuclear families as they do in extended families," said U-M researcher Beverly Strassmann, professor of anthropology and faculty associate at the U-M Institute for Social Research (ISR). "There's a naïve belief that villages raise children communally, when in reality children are raised by their own families and their survival depends critically on the survival of their mothers." ...

In the 1,700 Dogon children she followed, Strassmann found that children were over four times more likely to die by age 5 if their mothers were dead. ...

In her study of the Dogon, Strassmann found that children's risk of death is higher in polygynous than in monogamous families. This reflects the hazard of living with unrelated females whose own children are competing with the children of co-wives for limited resources.
Hillary Clinton was credited with writing a book titled, It Takes a Village, which was supposed an African proverb. But even in African villages, kids do better in a nuclear family than getting care by extended family or others in the village.

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