goalie,” she said smiling ruefully.” (Pugh 2009: 50) “Upper-income parents talked about spending $450 on a five year old’s birthday party, thousands of dollars for a family vacation to Cambodia, and hun-(Pugh 2009: 84)dreds of dollars on Halloween costumes. And the expenses went beyond commodities, to the experiences they worked to ensure their children could have. Schools could command $15,000 for private tuition, summer camps might be $3000-$4000, and they might spend $1000 a month on extracurricular activities like carpentry, dance, soccer, horseback riding or piano lessons.” (Pugh 2009: 85)
Compare Kusserow’s Parksiders: “…many understood their children’s desires were linked to their social citizenship at school, their ability to participate and belong, and most thus sought to respond to their children’s desires so that they could stand among their peers. …sought to understand their children as individuals, including their desires, as part of diagnosing their individual strengths and weaknesses —the central task of every upper-income caregiver before commencing on the path of (Pugh 2009: 111) “concerted cultivation.” Plumbing the depths of children’s desire was good parenting.” (Pugh 2009: 112) “Affluent children were nothing if not different. Parents offered long diagnoses of children’s individual traits—“Dennis just constitutionally is a very empathic guy. A soft, low-toned buy, and there’s something just…sweet about him. …Donna, an Arrowhead parent, described her son Gavin as needing “constant challenges.” “I just didn’t sense that in the public school system he’d get that,” she said.” (Pugh 2009: 192) “Affluent parents who chose private school often did so after deciding their children required a more individualized educational match for their particular needs and strengths—in other words their differences. …affluent parents were leery of the power of interactional differences—such as what children owned of experiences they could talk about—leery enough to respond to children’s desires, often despite their own ambivalence about spending. Yet at the same time many affluent parents, particularly mothers, felt responsible for searching for and recognizing their children’s psychological and intellectual differences, what we might call “personal differences. In upper-income families, this celebration of “uniqueness” was tied to spending through pathway consumption, just as the fear of interactional differences was linked to spending through commodity consumption.” (Pugh 2009: 193) Han, Sallie (2009) Imagining babies through belly talk. Anthropology News , 50(2): 13. “Talking, reading aloud and singing to the belly are activities that frequently were described to me, and that I occasionally observed, during 15 months of ethnographic research with US middle-class women and men.” (Han 2009: 13) “How belly talk is employed to turn fetuses into people and pregnant women into mothers…” (Han 2009: 13) “Both women and men in my study stressed the significance of belly talk in terms of bonding. Bridget explained: “I read somewhere that by 16 weeks,
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- Fall '14