Speaking Of Children
Summary of Speaking Of Children:
Speaking Of Children is an extract taken from “Mother’s Day or The View From Here” written by Barbara Holland. In this essay, the writer presents the advantages of a single child and the disadvantages of plural children. She argues in favor of having a single child for peace, privacy, and prosperity in married life.
A single child is like the organ of the parent’s body. They can teach their child whatever they like, carry them wherever they like and make them whatever they like. With a single child, the parents are still themselves. They can enjoy the luxuries of their life as they used to. A single child is just like external things like an electric toothbrush.
Plural children introduce unwanted culture into the family; they litter the living room bringing all the playthings. The parents have to shorten their journey. They have to waste their time talking to unknown people. They also have to shift their room time and again for the better school. When the children grow up, they use the telephone more often than the parents do. They also disturb their parents asking irrelevant questions.
Peace, privacy and a couple of martins are required to make married life happy. But with plural children, the dream of having these things never comes true. A wife needs to share her feelings with her husband in privacy. But if the parents have plural children, they disturb the conversation of their parents. They pretend to have something important to talk to their father. When they are sent out, they listen to the conversation of their parents secretly. Sometimes they want to drink what their father is drinking. Thus, sharing the feelings which are private between husband-wife becomes impossible with plural children. The parents can use some alternatives like using a telephone, second language, and writing notes. But the plural children create so many problems that they cannot be solved by the remedies suggested by the writer.
In conclusion, Barbara Holland suggests having a single child for peace, privacy, and prosperity in married life.
Some Important Questions And Answers From “Speaking Of Children”
Question. Does this essay speak in favor of or against having many children? Give reasons.
Answer. The given article has been written by one of the prominent female American writers of modern times, Barbara Holland. She has presented an account of the activities of a single child or plural children in a family.
The first sentence of this article clearly states the writer’s intention and the theme of the article as well. The writer seems to have written this article on the basis of her own experience. Overall she tends to suggest that having a single child in a family is much better than having plural children.
Holland never seems to be in favor of having many children, although she herself did have more than two children. She depicts that having plural children certainly does have some advantages such as children don’t suffer from loneliness, through children parents can have their social circle and relations enhanced and enlarged.
But on the other hand, there are a number of disadvantages of having plural children. According to her, the parents of plural children do have to face a number of problems. They have to bear huge expenses for the upbringing and education of the children. Often in parties, functions or public places, their children create noises. They are almost sure to destroy something valuable things at such places and the parents have to feel odd and insulted for such activities. Besides, the parents of plural children have to spend a lot of time on their children. Therefore, such parents often look depressed and gloomy.
But the most fatal and disappointing factor for the parent of plural children is that their private life is just ruined. They don’t have time and opportunity to spend some time together privately because whenever they try for this they are sure to be disturbed by one or the other of the children. The writer cites experience and says that she and her husband often sort opportunities to seat and meet together privately outside away from home. Because whenever they remain at home they were always disturbed by the children.
Thus, we see that Barbara Holland has been against having plural children since she herself was a victim of her own plural children.
Question. How do plural children become counter-culture in the family, according to Barbara Holland?
Answer. Barbara Holland writes that plural children become counterculture in the family. She prefers a single child to plural children in a family. She thinks many children means many cultures because every child develops an individual character. In that way, individual character shows individual culture. There are many cultures and all cultures are different from each other. One may want to drink milk another want to have tea and next might interest for coffee. One may want to play football in the room whereas another may want to watch TV. So every child has a different interest and taste. Therefore, plural children become counterculture in the family.
Some Important Questions From “Speaking Of Children”
Short Questions From “Speaking Of Children”
- How does Barbara Holland show her reaction against having many children? Explain.
- What is the central idea of the essay “Speaking of Children.”
- Summarise the essay “Speaking of Children”.
- What are the advantages and disadvantages of having plural children? Describe according to the essay “Speaking of Children”.
Long Questions From “Speaking Of Children”
- The author Holland seems worried about losing happiness, privacy and loneliness rather than the financial burden plural children may bring in the family. Explain.
- Why is Barbara Holland in favor of a single child? Discuss.
- Write a newspaper article on “The advantages of having a single child”.
- Describe the writer’s attitude to plural children.
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