Family Values and The Swiss Family Robinson Re-Boot

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If you are among the many of us bemoaning today’s sad state of Family Values  (which might include children texting at the dinner table), than here’s a great way to brush up on parenting skills. Re-read the classic-We-Are-Family-children’s-book,  Johann David Wyss’ The Swiss Family Robinson.

Here is the First Edition hardcover  we just sold.  Our book has a somewhat longer title:  The Swiss Family Robinson or the Adventures of a Shipwrecked Family on an Uninhabited Island Near New Guinea. It was published in 1898 by the now-defunct firm, Dewolfe, Fiske & Co. Unlike other antique Robinson editions, this one features lovely color illustrations to enhance it.  (This one is even scary!)

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Although our book is 115 years old, its contents are still quite relevant, especially where it concerns self-reliance, perseverance and courage. These are skills best learned as children within the family, as they were learned by the four young Robinsons in the book.

While the so-called  “reality” TV show, Survivor, might have taught those of us who watched it (out of desperation, really) a lot about what it takes to survive in a jungle, it did nothing to showcase the virtues  of succeeding through cooperation, trust, even bonding, as families do.

When Wyss first published his book in 1812, he was undoubtedly a proponent of the theory that family members who work together can thrive, even under the most dire circumstances, like being marooned on an island.

This enduring classic and/or the Disney movie version can be a great re-boot when it comes to assessing the skills you want to teach your children (, i.e., missing a Taylor Swift concert does not count as a dire circumstance). Some antique books have messages that stretch way beyond their publication date.

This is one of those books.

Family Values

Family Values

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