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The Anxious Generation: How the Great Rewiring of Childhood Is Causing an Epidemic of Mental Illness (Hardback)
  • The Anxious Generation: How the Great Rewiring of Childhood Is Causing an Epidemic of Mental Illness (Hardback)
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The Anxious Generation: How the Great Rewiring of Childhood Is Causing an Epidemic of Mental Illness (Hardback)

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Hardback 400 Pages
Published: 26/03/2024
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Waterstones Says

Reflecting on the psychological, social and physical consequences of a phone-based childhood, the author of the perennially bestselling The Righteous Mind delivers an eye-opening examination into the causes of the current mental health epidemic among young people.

An urgent and insightful investigation into the collapse in youth mental health, from the influential social psychologist and international bestselling author

Jonathan Haidt has spent his career speaking wisdom and truth in some of the most the most difficult spaces - communities polarized by politics and religion, campuses battling culture wars, and now the perfect storm contributing to a public health emergency for teenagers today.

In The Anxious Generation, Haidt argues that for the cohort that hit puberty around 2009, their sense of self developed as the threads of three dramatic technological and social changes emerged: smartphones and life with the constant companionship of a screen, front-facing cameras and apps that thrive on selfie-culture, and social networks that reduce engagement and affirmation to likes and hearts alone.

This book shows how the ground for the current crisis in teen mental health was seeded by a decades-long shift from play-based childhoods to ones defined by over-supervision, structure, and fear: how adults began to overprotect children in the real world while unwittingly offering scant protection in the brutal online world. Haidt delves into the latest psychological and biological research to show the four fundamental ways in which a phone-based childhood disrupts development - sleep deprivation, social deprivation, cognitive fragmentation, and addiction - while offering concrete and scientifically based advice to parents, schools, universities, governments, and to teens themselves. Drawing on ancient wisdom and cutting-edge research, this eye-opening book is a life-raft and a powerful call-to-arms.

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
ISBN: 9780241647660
Number of pages: 400
Weight: 619 g
Dimensions: 241 x 160 x 35 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

Compelling, readable – and incredibly chilling . . . a terrifying assessment of the digital carnage . . . remarkably persuasive . . . a clarion-call to parents everywhere - Lucy Denyer, Telegraph

Deals seriously with counter-arguments and gaps in the evidence . . . all the suggestions sound sensible. Some even sound fun - Economist

A game-changer for society . . . The statistics that Haidt offers are jaw-dropping . . . although this book is about young people, it will resonate with many of us . . . I can’t recommend this book highly enough; everyone should read it - Irish Independent

A book of devastating observations . . . his data is startling . . . robust scientific evidence for what we've all come to assume is true . . . it's the sheer scale of harm depicted here that should galvanise us - Simon Ings, Spectator

Forget horror; this is one of the most terrifying books I have read . . . some of the statistics Haidt quotes are truly shocking . . . a persuasive and rousing argument - Anna Davis, Evening Standard

If this important book rings enough alarms to make politicians impose a genuine social media ban on children, I believe most parents would be happy and most teenagers happier - The Times, Book of the Week

Urgent and essential . . . it ought to become a foundational text for the growing movement to keep smartphones out of schools, and young children off social media - Sophie McBain, Guardian

Lucid, memorable, galvanizing - Meghan Cox Gurdon, Wall Street Journal

Erudite, engaging, crusading - Tracy Dennis-Tiwary, New York Times Book Review

Compelling thesis . . . interweaving distressing analysis alongside practical advice - Ed Smith, New Statesman

I would be amazed if large parts of this book don’t ring painfully true . . . Whatever we do, it’s time to recognise that there’s been a massive shift in human behaviour - Mark Mason, Daily Mail

An urgent and provocative read on why so many kids are not okay—and how to course correct. . . . even if you’re not ready to ban smartphones until high school, this book will challenge you to rethink how we nurture the potential in our kids and prepare them for the world - Adam Grant, author of Think Again

Jonathan Haidt is a modern-day prophet, disguised as a psychologist. In this book, he’s back to warn us of the dangers of a phone-based childhood. He points the way forward to a brighter, stronger future for us all - Susan Cain, author of Quiet

This is a crucial read for parents of children of elementary school age and beyond, who face the rapidly changing landscape of childhood. Haidt lays out problems but also solutions for making a better digital life with kids - Emily Oster, author of Expecting Better

Every single parent needs to stop what they are doing and read this book immediately. Jonathan Haidt is the most important psychologist in the world today, and this is the most important book on the topic that’s reshaping your child’s life right now - Johann Hari, author of Stolen Focus

Beautifully grounds his critique in Buddhist, Taoist and Christian thought traditions . . . his common-sense recommendations for actions...are excellent - Judith Warner, Washington Post

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