Menu
Jump to content

What's with the ads?

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Savermom

Really frustrated with inappropriate content in History of the Ancient World

Recommended Posts

Mind you, we loved SOTW. We loved FLL. We love HOAW--my ds, (9th grader) read it out loud together. BUT, I'm confused as to why SWB throws in s**ual content. I don't want to read out loud to my 14 yr old son about exploits and personal details. They do nothing to enhance our understanding of history. Actually, it's detracting from it and making me a little mad as I, once again today, had to skip over a couple of sentences. Why is this stuff in there? I'm now regretting the fact that I already purchased History of the Medieval World for next year and wondering what's in there.

 

Am I the only one? No one has seemed to mention this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow- what exactly do you mean? We all have different taste levels so I'm wondering what you mean- how explicit are we talking?

 

I'm still in SOTW and haven't had so much as a kiss, so can't fathom...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'll admit I haven't made it all the way through HOAW but I haven't found anything inappropriate yet. Page #'s?

 

You must have missed the innuendo. There was something very early in the book about plowing a damp field *ahem* so I took the book back to the library. I was looking for something for my advanced 9 year old.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting. I've read both HOAW and HOMW and didn't notice anything inappropriate. I was going to let my 13 year-old read them, because he loves history. Guess I'd better go back and take a look. :confused:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Haven't purchased those two yet, but my impression was that they were a series for ADULTS.

 

Yes, but it's recommended for 9th grade in WTM, 3rd ed.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My ds, now 15, has read all of HOAW and most of HOMW. I only read about half of HOAW. I do remember the phrase mentioned above re: "plowing", but as Kathy B said, these books are written for adults. They are not high school textbooks and are not recommended for young children as a follow up to SOTW. I am pretty relaxed about what my ds reads, so a few sexual references were not offensive to me, and he passed them by without comment. Sometimes sexual relationships do have bearing on history, and I didn't feel the sentences were out of place in the context of the chapters. Ds enjoys Susan's writing style and is looking forward to HORW. In fact he gives her his highest praise--she writes so logically and without unnecessary fluff!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hmmm, my 14 ds did show me the "plowing the damp field..." reference, but hasn't mentioned anything else. Maybe he is not reading it carefully enough and I need to start quizzing him!! He has come a long way this year (maturity), and while we would never want him to make those references himself, I think he is old enough to handle it in his occasionally in his reading. Fact is, when studying the ancient cultures, they were pretty, ummm, hedonistic??? I believe the above mentioned sentence was a direct quote and not one SWB just threw in of her own description.

We just bought HoMW today so I might actually have time to read it before him! Tried to keep up with him this year and just couldn't do it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Sex is not a new concept and romantic tales and sexual relationships are a part of history. Herodotus, Plato, thucydities (KNOW I didn't spell that right, sorry), Gilgamesh, shakespeare, greek/roman/african/and other myths and more ALL had sex or innuendo of it.

 

I think high schoolers should be able to handle discussion about it. *shrugs*

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You must have missed the innuendo. There was something very early in the book about plowing a damp field *ahem* so I took the book back to the library. I was looking for something for my advanced 9 year old.

 

 

I can see where that innuendo might be a problem for a 9 y/o. For a high school student I don't have a problem with it. Much of the high school reading list, including Shakespeare, has sexual themes and/or innuendo.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I gave Good Earth to dd to read in 9th grade, she made a few comments (I forgot what all was in it). I just said that is what it was like, oh well.... I do like exposing them to things as teenagers with them here and being able to talk about it if they want to, but don't like a steady diet of it. There is a steady diet of it in college, so you don't want them shocked!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I can't remember where all of them are since we are far into the book. Today we read on pg 570 "Among the solutions for the city's troubles is a law proclaiming that any man who wants to sleep with a young woman has to 'pleasure an older one first.'"

 

Pg 522: "This time, he annoyed his wife by 'not having s** with her in the usual way.

 

There are several direct references and actual use of the s** word and references to it that just makes it very uncomfortable to read aloud with my son.

 

I thought this was written for the high school level. Perhaps I'm mistaken In which case I need to switch to a different history book next year. Can anyone verify if the Medieval book is free of these references?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok, just read the description on Peacehillpress.com:

 

Susan Wise Bauer's history book for high schoolers and adults!

 

Perhaps you think I'm being too prudish. However, I don't agree that age 14 is an appropriate age for this. 17 or 18 I could deal with it. One of the reasons we hs is to shelter our kids from too young exposure. Granted, it's in literature, but I just don't think it was necessary to add it into this book. It's a shame for me because I love the way SWB writes history. Nothing compares. I'll just feel a bit sad if I can't continue with the series. sigh

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I can't remember where all of them are since we are far into the book. Today we read on pg 570 "Among the solutions for the city's troubles is a law proclaiming that any man who wants to sleep with a young woman has to 'pleasure an older one first.'"

 

Pg 522: "This time, he annoyed his wife by 'not having s** with her in the usual way.

 

There are several direct references and actual use of the s** word and references to it that just makes it very uncomfortable to read aloud with my son.

 

I thought this was written for the high school level. Perhaps I'm mistaken In which case I need to switch to a different history book next year. Can anyone verify if the Medieval book is free of these references?

 

Was that the laws?

Not having sex in the usual way could be a political statement or an act of spite (a refusal to have children off her for example, to shame her before other women, or to deny her inheritance..)

 

I'm not sure how you get through a reading of the bible if those references offend.:001_huh:

 

I don't have these books, so can't comment other than in direct reference to what is given as an example.

 

So far, the bible is more shocking and we read it without a problem most days.:)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think if you want to keep things that mild out of your high schooler's history reading, you will probably have to go to a conservative Christian text. Most books written to that age range are going to contain information about s**xual relations/relationships. They show part of the character of the society in a given time period. They have also made political and social impacts.

 

Choosing what your kids hear and don't hear is your right, but I don't think an author can write authentically to an adult audience and leave that information out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Granted, it's in literature, but I just don't think it was necessary to add it into this book.

 

But she's not adding it...she's just not leaving it out. I assume...I mean, I haven't read the books, but I'm going to guess that SWB isn't making up s*xual stuff that didn't actually happen in order to make the books more exciting. If I were going to edit history to make it more age appropriate for high schoolers, I'd rather edit out the violence than the s*x. But then there wouldn't be a whole lot left, unfortunately...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well 9 is very young for this and it wasn't intended for that audience...so....

 

Sex is not a new concept and romantic tales and sexual relationships are a part of history. Herodotus, Plato, thucydities (KNOW I didn't spell that right, sorry), Gilgamesh, shakespeare, greek/roman/african/and other myths and more ALL had sex or innuendo of it.

 

I think high schoolers should be able to handle discussion about it. *shrugs*

 

:iagree:

 

Having just read over some of the parts mentioned-it's written of matter of factually, it's not salacious at all, and like Martha said, it has a lot to do with history. People who run countries have relationships and those relationships impact the laws/story of history.

 

I mean, the way you posted I thought SWB wrote something titillating, which really isn't the case at all. She was illustrating a point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Am I the only one? No one has seemed to mention this.

 

Are you also following TWTM reading list? There has been discussion on the sexual content in Gilgamesh as well as the discomfort that some of us have felt when discussing Oedipus Rex with our thirteen or fourteen year old sons.

 

By the way, Gilgamesh is on reading lists of some very conservative curricula.

 

Frankly I do not think that the content of these literary works is inappropriate for a teen. Teens are working their way to adulthood. This is the time to discuss things, not sweep them under the rug.

 

If I were going to edit history to make it more age appropriate for high schoolers, I'd rather edit out the violence than the s*x. But then there wouldn't be a whole lot left, unfortunately...

 

:iagree:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well 9 is very young for this and it wasn't intended for that audience...so....

 

 

 

 

Obviously, ;) I was just confirming to the poster, who missed the reference, that they were indeed there, while trying not to give my opinion on whether it is appropriate for a highschooler. I commented that he was 9, so people would understand why I did not use the book! :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well 9 is very young for this and it wasn't intended for that audience...so....

 

I saw that, but if the student is truly advanced intellectually, they should be able to handle factual information. As you say, there is nothing erotic about the material. Or at least, not any more erotic than the bible so far.

 

If the student is not ready for these discussions, then I kindly pose they are not as intellectually ready for advancement into high school materials as might have been previously expected.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Are you also following TWTM reading list? There has been discussion on the sexual content in Gilgamesh as well as the discomfort that some of us have felt when discussing Oedipus Rex with our thirteen or fourteen year old sons.

 

By the way, Gilgamesh is on reading lists of some very conservative curricula.

 

Frankly I do not think that the content of these literary works is inappropriate for a teen. Teens are working their way to adulthood. This is the time to discuss things, not sweep them under the rug.

 

 

 

:iagree:

 

Hooo don't be picking up Steven Mitchell's version (which is downright lyrical). I needed a cigarette after reading @ Shamhat and Enkidu. ;)

 

And yes, I agree with the rest, too.:001_smile:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, it sounds as if I'm the only one with an issue! I do appreciate your points of view and will leave me with something to think about.

 

I still think 95% of the references could have been left out without sacrificing any context. And I still think my 14 yr old is too young. I'll probably always feel that way. It's hard letting go. Want to keep them by babies forever! :blush:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hooo don't be picking up Steven Mitchell's version (which is downright lyrical). I needed a cigarette after reading @ Shamhat and Enkidu. ;)

 

 

 

:lol::lol::lol:

 

(Oh my--thank you for the laugh!)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hooo don't be picking up Steven Mitchell's version (which is downright lyrical). I needed a cigarette after reading @ Shamhat and Enkidu. ;)

 

And yes, I agree with the rest, too.:001_smile:

 

I couldn't finish reading it because my face felt like it would catch fire from the blushing. And I am no where near a prude by most standards.:blush:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sex is not a new concept and romantic tales and sexual relationships are a part of history. Herodotus, Plato, thucydities (KNOW I didn't spell that right, sorry), Gilgamesh, shakespeare, greek/roman/african/and other myths and more ALL had sex or innuendo of it.

 

I think high schoolers should be able to handle discussion about it. *shrugs*

:iagree: We've been studying Asian history this year. Lots of mentions of concubines, but still necessary to understand the actual history.

 

 

Frankly I do not think that the content of these literary works is inappropriate for a teen. Teens are working their way to adulthood. This is the time to discuss things, not sweep them under the rug.

 

 

 

:iagree: I have an only child. Honestly, I want the freedom to discuss sexual matters with him. Studying it in the context of history opens the doors of discussion. I think those can be great times to stop and discuss your family's viewpoint on sexuality.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I saw that, but if the student is truly advanced intellectually, they should be able to handle factual information. As you say, there is nothing erotic about the material. Or at least, not any more erotic than the bible so far.

 

If the student is not ready for these discussions, then I kindly pose they are not as intellectually ready for advancement into high school materials as might have been previously expected.

 

:001_huh::blink: Seriously?? You had to go there?? Nice.

 

I am out of here. . . :auto:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
:001_huh::blink: Seriously?? You had to go there?? Nice.

 

I am out of here. . . :auto:

 

Well okayyyy.:confused:

 

I didn't say anything mean, nor did I intend it that way.

 

High school and higher up subjects, including history, DO require a level of intellectual objectivity and maturity to fully understand and discuss.

 

If a student has not reached the development stage of having that objectivity and maturity, they probably aren't ready for material at that level. I'm not calling them stupid, I'm saying they just aren't ready for the material. There is nothing mean or even rude about that. It is what it is.

 

If my student/child cannot comprehend how sex and relationships where used for political and other reasons, they are going to have a difficult time with a LOT of higher history and literature. Rather than edit historical intent and cultural reality to suit the student, I would kindly suggest instead deciding they aren't ready for the academic level. If they are 9, there are plenty of options out there more appropriate for them. If the concern is mature content, then I'm not sure why someone would be upset to be told a product geared for a audience of a certain academic maturity might not be intellectually appropriate for their immature (as in young, not as in a slight against their character) child.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm not sure why someone would be upset to be told a product geared for a audience of a certain academic maturity might not be intellectually appropriate for their immature (as in young, not as in a slight against their character) child.

 

I was directly answering a poster who said they read the books and did not see any sexual references. I never remotely implied I was upset with the books or thought the books were inappropriate for a highschooler. I simply stated that there were indeed sexual references and why I chose not to use the book at the time.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Um, don't laugh, but are you guys saying that the term plowing a damp field means something other than plowing a damp field? I even asked hubby...we're stumped.

 

Crawling back in my own little world now.

 

Alison

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm feeling REALLY stupid, but I have NO idea what "plowing through a damp field" means and have never heard that expression.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm feeling REALLY stupid, but I have NO idea what "plowing through a damp field" means and have never heard that expression.

You're not alone. I have no clue either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

though I did not see that portion in particular, if I'm going to take a wild guess,

 

I'm feeling REALLY stupid, but I have NO idea what "plowing through a damp field" means and have never heard that expression.

 

plowing fields, spreading seeds...it's an old time euphemism of the birds and bees kind

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
But she's not adding it...she's just not leaving it out.

Actually, there is quite a lot that's left out - for example, there's no mention of Hephaestion. That doesn't bother me though as we use other resources as well.

 

 

I think that SWB does a good job of balancing different priorities. Some people clearly think she should've omitted some sections, but others may well think that there's more that should have been included, just as some people think that SOTW is too Christian and others think it's not Christian enough. There's no way to write a history book that everyone will think is perfect.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Well, it sounds as if I'm the only one with an issue! I do appreciate your points of view and will leave me with something to think about.

 

I still think 95% of the references could have been left out without sacrificing any context. And I still think my 14 yr old is too young. I'll probably always feel that way. It's hard letting go. Want to keep them by babies forever! :blush:

 

I just want to thank you for posting this, as I have not heard this before. I was thinking about using this next year, but I may reconsider (or read it aloud). I don't mind references, but like you, I don't think I am ready for ds to be exposed to that material yet. I think everyone knows their child best, and for some the content may not be an issue (after all, one of the benefits of homeschooling is having a choice in the materials used). I would prefer to save this for when my children are a little older. Again, thank you for sharing so I can make an informed decision :).

Michelle

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Um, don't laugh, but are you guys saying that the term plowing a damp field means something other than plowing a damp field? I even asked hubby...we're stumped.

 

Crawling back in my own little world now.

 

Alison

 

In the book, the sentence is something like: She asked him to "plow her damp field".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I can't remember where all of them are since we are far into the book. Today we read on pg 570 "Among the solutions for the city's troubles is a law proclaiming that any man who wants to sleep with a young woman has to 'pleasure an older one first.'"

 

Pg 522: "This time, he annoyed his wife by 'not having s** with her in the usual way.

 

There are several direct references and actual use of the s** word and references to it that just makes it very uncomfortable to read aloud with my son.

 

 

 

We are considered pretty lax in what we allow our ds to read/watch compared to most homeschoolers we know. With that said, I would be very uncomfortable with these statements being read by my son. Granted, he's only 12 right now, but I can't imagine 2 years will make me feel more comfortable. We are very open at talking about sex, dating, etc. with him, but these statements are too crude for even us.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We are considered pretty lax in what we allow our ds to read/watch compared to most homeschoolers we know. With that said, I would be very uncomfortable with these statements being read by my son. Granted, he's only 12 right now, but I can't imagine 2 years will make me feel more comfortable. We are very open at talking about sex, dating, etc. with him, but these statements are too crude for even us.

 

I would suggest you read the book and not excerpts before you judge it :001_smile:.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Hooo don't be picking up Steven Mitchell's version (which is downright lyrical). I needed a cigarette after reading @ Shamhat and Enkidu. ;)

 

:lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
though I did not see that portion in particular, if I'm going to take a wild guess,

 

 

 

plowing fields, spreading seeds...it's an old time euphemism of the birds and bees kind

 

And a plow has a point, that, you know, is meant to open a furrow in the damp ground. Not exactly lyrical, but there you go.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm feeling REALLY stupid, but I have NO idea what "plowing through a damp field" means and have never heard that expression.

 

Thank goodness you said something, because I was too embarrassed to ask! :blushing:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I would suggest you read the book and not excerpts before you judge it :001_smile:.

 

:iagree:In a previous thread, I asked how appropriate the book would be for a young teen, and someone directed me to some passages. I was pretty sure I'd be ruling out the book, but when dh and I went over the passages in context in the actual book, we decided we were okay with it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...