The Deterioration of Childhood Innocence Due to Media and Consumerism
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“Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see,” said Neil Postman in his novel: The Disappearance of Childhood. In recent generations, the ideal of childhood innocence has been disappearing due to several factors of modernization. But the innocence of youth needs to be protected so children will learn and grow in healthy ways, rather than rush into adulthood. It is a grown-ups’ responsibility to build a metaphorical wall between a child’s innocence and various types of media and consumerism. Although it is becoming increasingly difficult due to the powerful world of media, which constantly reinvents itself to outwit the latest parental imposition, the preservation of innocence is not impossible. The innocence of…show more content… Thus, a heavy responsibility fell onto parents, teachers and the government for what is eventually written on the mind of children. Postman claims that “Locke’s tabula rasa created a sense of guilt in parents about their children’s development, and provided the psychological and epistemological grounds for making the careful nurturing of children a national priority,” (57). In modern days, the idea of childhood innocence is “one that defines childhood, in part, by claiming for it the need to be sheltered from adult secrets, particularly sexual secrets,” (Postman 9). Childhood innocence is the main difference between an adult and a child because “adults know certain facets of life – it’s mysteries, its contradictions, its violence, its tragedies – that are not considered suitable for children to know; that are indeed, shameful to reveal to them indiscriminately,” (Postman 15). Childhood innocence is an idea worth protecting so children do not grow up too fast. As children move towards adulthood, these secrets should slowly be revealed to them.
Several changes in our generation are a factor to the dying of childhood innocence, but electronic media or “the incunabula of television” as Postman calls it, plays a large part in killing childhood and the innocence that comes with it. Electronic media, such as the internet and television, does not make the preservation of innocence impossible, but it does make it harder since children are exposed to adult knowledge too soon in