The Evening of Life   /   Fall 2018   /    Book Reviews

Raising Wunderkinder

Rita Koganzon

Vaudeville, Act 6, Zoltan Toeroek, Child Prodigy, 1907, by Moriz Jung; Artokoloro Quint Lox Limited/Alamy Stock Photo.

Tiger Mom vs Everymom

Child prodigies take us to the heart of a central conflict in democratic education: Should we focus our national energies on equality—raising everyone to a level—or on elevating the best to their potential? Ideally, we might do both, and we try to, even in the face of limited resources. But even if resources were unlimited, the tension between these two ends would persist: The very existence of outstanding genius sabotages the search for a satisfactory “level” to which everyone else might be brought. 

To read the full article online, please login to your account or subscribe to our digital edition ($25 yearly). Prefer print? Order back issues or subscribe to our print edition ($30 yearly).