From Gifts and Dec
Those of you who read this blog and my columns know that I find our industry worthy of study and commentary. We are serious people engaged in serious work. By shaping the way children play, we shape, we reflect, and we anticipate the way the next generation of adults will function. No less (and maybe more) than great writers, philosophers, and generals, we help write the future of the world.
It was therefore with some pleasure that I read a January 20, 2008 New York Times article by John Schwartz with the wonderful title “The Joy of Silly.” Here are a couple of quotes I like:
“. . . Toy fads [are] ‘a surprisingly serious subject…the toys that make it big say a lot about the societies that love them.”
Edward Tenner, “Our Own Devices: How Technology Remakes Humanity”
“I’m not sure that fads aren’t fertilizer to American culture.”
Ray B. Browne, founder of The Journal of Popular Culture
Sometimes we are surprised when individuals, institutions, the press and even governments criticize us for the impact we have on children’s behavior. After all, we think, we are just making toys. Well we are but we are also changing lives and impacting the future. Everyone else seems to recognize that. Maybe it’s time we did as well.