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mrkstvns

An alternate reality version of Boy Scouts' founding...

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Posted (edited)

What motivated Baden-Powell to start the boy scout movement?  Was it purely an altruistic desire to see boys grow up with values, confidence, and integrity?  Or could it have been a bit darker, reflecting his own shortcomings in battle and a yearning to recapture the innocence of his own youth?

Here's one writer's venture into the rabbit hole of conjecture...
https://daily.jstor.org/boy-scouts-and-the-phenomenon-of-boyification/ 

 

Edited by mrkstvns

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5 minutes ago, mrkstvns said:

Here's one writer's venture into the rabbit hole of conjecture...
https://daily.jstor.org/boy-scouts-and-the-phenomenon-of-boyification/ 

 

Wow - that is some Educational Ivory Tower wide ranging ramblings.  Interesting the writer makes a number of broad statements, but little or no actual foundation.

Some interesting revisionist history, they fall into the trap of viewing historical events in the lens of current thinking.

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6 hours ago, walk in the woods said:

Anybody else tired of the evil white men using toxic masculinity to destroy the world and corrupting youth narrative?

I am absolutely one who is tired of the evil middle aged white man argument.  I find it hypocritically driven from hate and bigotry and dependent on simplistic lazy logic.  

BUT .... with that said ... some of the statements in the book are absolutely true.  

  • Scouts was absolutely a reaction to industrialization and trend of the population moving from the country into cities.  ... Scouts was right in line with "Go west" quotes about maturing boys into men.   The originally posted link has a link to a good article that rings true ... https://daily.jstor.org/go-west-you-nervous-men/ ... Warning ... the article does go off the rails raising topics such as "xenophobia and racism".   My response is show me a culture in 1850s / 1900s that didn't have contempt for the outsiders.  
  • Adult men absolutely have romanticized boyhood.  Before scouts in the country, boyhood was hard and families often focused on survival.  Now, we often see adult men play scouts to revisit their childhood.  I am sure it's part of the reason I enjoy the program.  Sleep in tents.  Eat off a camp fire.  Laugh and look at the stars.  ... flip side ... avoid home maintenance, get away from extended family relationships and issues, hide from being an adult.  ... I do disagree that it was a reaction to the wars.  But then again, I am sure war experiences drove Baden-Powell.  

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