Swedish school bans “him” and “her” to avoid stereotypes

The Mail reports:

A pre-school in Sweden has decided to stop calling children ‘him’ or ‘her’ in a bid to stop them falling into gender stereotypes.

The Egalia preschool, in the Sodermalm district of Stockholm, has made the decision as part of the country efforts to engineer equality between the sexes from childhood.

As well as the decision to stop using the words, the taxpayer-funded school also carefully plans the colour and placement of toys and the choice of books to assure they do not fall into stereotypes.

The school opened last year and is one a mission to break down gender roles—a core mission in the national curriculum for Swedish preschools.

The option to implement the rules is underpinned by a theory that society gives boys an unfair edge.

‘Egalia gives them a fantastic opportunity to be whoever they want to be.’

But what if a boy (like most boys) wants to be a boy? What if a girl (like most girls) wants to be a girl? Egalia is denying them that opportunity, by barring the very concept of boy and girl.

The liberal program of complete freedom only makes sense if the liberal belief is true that we are nothing but a collection of personal desires and choices, and that we have no essence, no inborn nature that seeks its natural expression and fulfillment. But if we do have an essence, an inborn nature that seeks its fulfillment, then liberal “freedom” is the most oppressive, anti-human idea ever conceived by the mind of man.

Here is the rest of the article:

Lego bricks and other building blocks are intentionally placed next to the kitchen, to make sure the children draw no mental barriers between cooking and construction.

Meanwhile, nearly all the children’s books deal with homosexual couples, single parents or adopted children. There are no ‘Snow White,’ ‘Cinderella’ or other fairy tales.

Director Lotta Rajalin notes that Egalia places a special emphasis on fostering an environment tolerant of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.

Rajalin also says the staff also try to help the children discover new ideas when they play.

‘A concrete example could be when they’re playing ‘house’ and the role of the mom already is taken and they start to squabble,’ she says. ‘Then we suggest two moms or three moms and so on.’

Egalia’s methods are controversial with Rajalin claiming the staff have received threats from racists apparently upset about the preschool’s use of black dolls.

But she says that there’s a long waiting list for admission, and that only one couple has pulled a child out of the school.

Jukka Korpi, 44, says he and his wife chose Egalia ‘to give our children all the possibilities based on who they are and not on their gender.’

Staff at the school try to shed masculine and feminine references from their speech, including the pronouns him or her—‘han’ or ‘hon’ in Swedish. Instead, they’ve have adopted the genderless ‘hen’.

‘We use the word “Hen” for example when a doctor, police, electrician or plumber or such is coming to the kindergarten,’ Rajalin says.

‘We don’t know if it’s a he or a she so we just say “Hen is coming around 2 p.m.” Then the children can imagine both a man or a woman. This widens their view.’

Jay Belsky, a child psychologist at the University of California, Davis, said he’s not aware of any other school like Egalia, and he questioned whether it was the right way to go.

‘The kind of things that boys like to do—run around and turn sticks into swords—will soon be disapproved of,’ he said.

‘So gender neutrality at its worst is emasculating maleness.’

- end of initial entry -

June 28

Tim W. writes:

Has there ever been an era as insane as that of the post-sixties Western world? It’s fashionable today, particularly for people under the age of thirty, to laugh at the “stupidity” of people in older times. They sure were stupid to think the earth was flat or that disease was caused by demons. But those were things people believed in absence of proof to the contrary. Many people today believe any number of falsehoods in spite of proof to the contrary. The liberal belief that sex (meaning the two sexes and their mutual distinctions) is a sociological construction is one such absurdity.

You observed that if the liberal belief that we have no essence is wrong, then liberalism is the most anti-human and oppressive ideology in human history. That is correct. There has never been an ideology so at war with the natural order of things. And its adherents seem completely unreflective and unaware of this as they put the pedal to the floor and drive us toward a cliff.

The Chinese, the Islamic world, and others must look at us in astonishment. Can you imagine turning on the news and hearing that Japan just legalized same-sex “marriage” or that Saudi Arabia just threw open its borders on the grounds that it doesn’t make any difference what the population makeup of the country is? Can you imagine China with an army that is one quarter female (with their idealized goal being fifty percent)? I can’t. Only in the post-sixties West are we that insane.

Greg W. writes:

This will make your heart sink for these children.

All toys are gender neutral, so these children can “choose who they want to be.” They are choosing to be nothing. A shapeless form. This is further proof of the denial of human nature by liberals. They believe sex roles were shaped by inequality from men, rather than our ancestors naturally figuring out “Hey, men are better at this and women are better at that, so it makes sense that we work together within our respective strengths for our mutual benefit.”

What liberals don’t understand is that the real world is not sex neutral. These kids can’t pick toys that are sex specific, but they surely will as soon as they’re given the opportunity of choice, with about 99 percent accuracy; girls will pick a doll, boys a truck.

“The kind of things that boys like to do—run around and turn sticks into swords—will soon be disapproved of,” he said. “So gender neutrality at its worst is emasculating maleness.” Smart man.

You’ll notice also that nearly all books for the children to read are about gays, single parents, or adopted children. So, what this school is teaching is that traditional sex roles and traditional marriage and child rearing is more un-equal (an Orwellian style term).

LA replies:

You wrote:

“A shapeless form.”

I would say rather, “A formless shape,” as in T.S. Eliot’s “The Hollow Men”:

Shape without form, shade without colour,
Paralysed force, gesture without motion;”

Posted by Lawrence Auster at June 27, 2011 10:46 AM | Send

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