The Blank Slate

The long-accepted theory that parents can mold their children like clay has distorted choices faced by adults trying to balance their lives, multiplied the anguish of those whose children haven't turned out as hoped, and mangled the science of human behavior

By Steven Pinker, Holly Lindem|Tuesday, October 01, 2002

From the forthcoming book The Blank Slate by Steven Pinker. Copyright © Steven Pinker, 2002. Printed by arrangement with Viking Penguin, a member of Penguin Putnam Inc. To be published in September 2002.

Discover only had the right to post this article online for one year. For more, please see Stephen Pinker's book.

For more from Steven Pinker, including recent publications, see www.mit.edu/~pinker.

Read Pinker's lecture The Blank Slate, the Noble Savage, and the Ghost in the Machine, part of the Tanner Lectures on Human Values delivered at Yale University, April 1999: www. tannerlectures.utah.edu/lectures/pinker00.pdf.

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