Much maligned, but the truth is hippie kids are gentle, talented and doing alright.
I had written about Sarah Beach for three reasons. The first is that my novel Wild Child is about a sexually precocious hippie girl, the second is that Sarah defies the 'victim' industry; those people who assert that such precocious children must be victims terribly damaged for life, and the third is my firm belief that the subjects (I will not use the term victim) must be allowed to speak for themselves. And when they do speak we must listen carefully, even if they tell us things we don't want to hear. Children are often subject to two forms of [...]
Writing about young Chloe helping to deliver her baby brother reminded me about the orgasmic birth movement. In my novel Wild Child, the main character's mother has an orgasm during her birth; part of the reason she is called Bliss. Of course the Judeo-Christian tradition curses women with a painful birth; God punishes Eve by saying: I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Genesis 3:16 Tragically this has conditioned many Western women to believe that birth must be painful. Not so. The Indian traditions of yoga and tantra have taught modern [...]
This is not that unusual. I mention it because the main character in my novel Wild Child helps deliver some of the community children. If you listen to the moral conservatives she's too young to cope and could be traumatized by the experience. She may also be deeply shocked at learning where babies come from. The girl is Cleo Debnam and she is the proud sister to a new baby brother. See the clip here. What I particularly appreciate is the confidence her mother had in Cleo, saying that she was 'very capable'. It is also worth noting that she [...]
I know, seems odd to be commenting on celebrity news but I think Miranda deserves credit for choosing to publish the first photo of her baby at her breast. There has been such a ridiculous taboo over breastfeeding that this is something of a transgressive act - especially given that Miranda is deliberately making a statement (as this was the only photo released to the press). I also applaud her for her pregnancy photo - although I hasten to add that some idiots have chosen to hide her nipples. What exactly is the problem with female nipples? I just don't [...]
Excellent Canadian documentary on the ABC last night called Lost Adventures of Childhood that explores the effect of free play on child development. During the 80's and 90's a combination of irresponsible journalism and pop psychology led to parents becoming increasingly neurotic about letting their kids out to play. A fear of predators and competitive parenting had a particular appeal to neurotic middle-class parents. The program details some of their neurotic excesses. The parents who have given their daughters GPS trackers so they can use their home computer to monitor where they are at all times. The parents who have [...]
Bliss from my novel Wild Child comes from sub-tropical northern NSW. She lives on a community on land that backs onto the Nightcap Ranges. The region is riddled with creeks and small rivers. Head into the lush sub-tropical rainforest and this is what you see. This is Bliss's backyard. No need to wear clothes in such isolated places and there are plenty of swimming holes (although the water can get brackish).
My novel Wild Child explores the 'wilder' aspects of the counter culture. The main character Bliss is raised in a hippie community and they have a very free attitude to child raising. It is the post 'free love' period. By the time Bliss is born the feminist movement has knocked the free love concept on its head and replaced it with the freedom to say no as well as yes, the time of the 'children's liberation' movement. I have known many such 'hippie' kids. Most have done very well, some have not. The complete lack of boundaries meant that some [...]
Saw a fascinating program on origami. What a revelation! The art has progressed well beyond cute animals. Two of the pioneers featured were the father and son team of Marty and Erik Demaine, both artists and mathematicians, although the son, Erik, is more of a mathematician.I mention them because of Erik's unconventional childhood. Erik was home schooled and clearly had a bohemian childhood. He is also intellectually gifted. He entered university at age 12, became the youngest professor at MIT at age 20 and received a McArthur Fellowship at age 22. Dr Erik Demaine His life perfectly reflects the themes [...]