Bullying Is Front and Centre, and Clear-Eyed Assessment Can Help Parents, Professionals

Winnipeg Free Press, March 9, 2013 | Go to article overview

Bullying Is Front and Centre, and Clear-Eyed Assessment Can Help Parents, Professionals


Yale law professor, essayist and magazine editor Emily Bazelon's revealing book on bullying is based on two years of in-depth research she conducted for a series of articles published in the online journal Slate.

It is a clear-eyed, analytical assessment of bullying, its modern manifestations and the educational and legal systems' responses to the problem.

Bazelon conveys the issue's complexities intelligently and in an accessible, straightforward style. It is a near perfect book for concerned parents and for professionals looking for fresh answers.

Bullying is the curse of childhood, and any child who has ever been physically, emotionally or verbally bullied knows that the old saw "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me" is a crock.

Parents are rightly concerned about in-school bullying and the creeping tentacles of 24/7 cyber-bullying. Over-heated media reports attribute tragic youth suicides to cyber-bullying ("bullycide") and leave listeners, viewers and readers with the impression that we are in a crisis situation.

However, Bazelon contends that the percentages of children being bullied and those who bully have not changed over time. Yes, she acknowledges, it is a serious problem, but schoolyard bullies and Facebook slanders are not signs of a coming bully apocalypse.

And what about the bully? How are they affected by their behaviour? Psychologists, Bazelon tells us, have learned that children who engage in bullying are more likely to develop psychological problems in adulthood. Consequently, bullying must be seen as is a multi-pronged social problem.

Bullying is front and centre in Manitoba today. The provincial NDP government, responding to the legislative paths taken by other Canadian provinces and U.S. states, is broadening the definition of bullying and adding protections in the public schools for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgendered (GLBT) persons.

Bazelon discusses in depth the American legislation on bullying and culture-war disputes on GLBT rights and school obligations. In the U.S., as in Canada, various faith-based schools and community interest groups contend that gay-rights protections infringe on religious values, while public school educators generally contend the right to safe schools overrides other considerations.

Manitoba's proposed bill redefines bullying as "typically, but need not be, repeated behaviour." Along with many American and Canadian academics, Bazelon believes this is too vague and will create unmanageable disciplinary issues for schools. As well, students might unjustifiably be labelled as bullies, leading to unwarranted sanctions and social stigmatization.

Bazelon is not blind to the anguish teenage victims suffer at the hands of bullies, the helpless feelings of parents and inadequate responses of the school system.

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Sign up now for a free, 1-day trial and receive full access to:

  • Questia's entire collection
  • Automatic bibliography creation
  • More helpful research tools like notes, citations, and highlights
  • Ad-free environment

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Bullying Is Front and Centre, and Clear-Eyed Assessment Can Help Parents, Professionals
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Full screen

matching results for page

Cited passage

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Sign up now to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

"Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited passage

Welcome to the new Questia Reader

The Questia Reader has been updated to provide you with an even better online reading experience.  It is now 100% Responsive, which means you can read our books and articles on any sized device you wish.  All of your favorite tools like notes, highlights, and citations are still here, but the way you select text has been updated to be easier to use, especially on touchscreen devices.  Here's how:

1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
2. Click or tap the last word you want to select.

OK, got it!

Thanks for trying Questia!

Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

For full access in an ad-free environment, sign up now for a FREE, 1-day trial.

Already a member? Log in now.