This month’s “everybody must read” book is A World of Babies: Imagined Childcare Guides for Eight Societies, edited by Alma Gottlieb and Judy DeLoache. With a first edition published in 2000 and widely read, the almost entirely new, updated edition of A World of Babies confirms the authors capacity to merge ethnography and informed research with original and accessible writing.
Simply put it, the editors explain that the primary aim of the book “is to illustrate how childcaring customs of any community, however peculiar and unnatural they may appear to an outsider, make sense when understood within the context of that society, as well as within its broader geopolitical context. Childcare practices vary so much across time and space precisely because they are firmly embedded in divergent phsysical, economic, and cultural realities.”
The book also addresses the challenges that poverty and globalization pose for parents. A good example of public scholarship.