Hearing Ourselves Think: Cognitive Research in the College Writing Classroom

By Barbara M. Sitko; Ann M. Penrose | Go to book overview

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Appendix: Texts

Paternalism Source Text*

Paternalism, according to Webster's Seventh Collegiate Dictionary, is "a system under which an authority treats those under its control in a fatherly way, especially in regulating their conduct and supplying their needs." In the United States, there are some economic relationships that can be aptly described as paternalistic. For example, affluent families hire domestic servants who sometimes come to be regarded and treated as family members. But such relationships do not describe the mainstream of the American economy. For the most part, workers in America are protected by union contracts and legal rights. They do not routinely look upon their employer as a fatherly or parental figure who will attend to their general welfare and happiness in return for the services they render.

In cultures where there is no strong, centralized government to define and protect

____________________
*
Adapted from "Introduction to Paternalism", D. S. Kaufer, class handout, Carnegie Mellon University, 1985.

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