15 Chapters on Socialization

Analysis by, Melissa Hernandez.

Written: 2/20/2020

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In the video, An Interview with Dr. James Garbarino - The Impact of Parenting on Child Development: The Glendon Association (2015), Dr. James Garbarino (an author and professor at Loyola University, Chicago, who specializes in studying triggers in violent children and rehabilitation) presents the different socialization of boys and girls in society; in relation to, parenting and child development. Overall, gender conditioning and expectations start when a baby’s sex is revealed with gender-specific clothes (e.g., makeup, jewelry, shoes, and dress) and toys (e.g., model airplanes versus dolls), activities (e.g., sports and automobiles versus Disney’s princesses and fashion), and colors (e.g., as it has been traditionally, pink for girls and blue for boys); additionally, advertisements, graphics, and commercials emphasize stereotypical roles and use it to their advantage for marketing purposes (Gollnick and Chinn, 2017, p. 86-87). Although studies show exciting improvements, considering the effects of the media over the past 30 years, the issue is still prevalent; hence, educators should mindfully consider content/activities when planning, as well as, their teaching and learning strategies (Gollnick and Chinn, 2017, p. 88). 

15 Chapters 

The video focuses on a variety of aspects on human development; hence, Dr. James Garbarino interview was divided into 15 chapters. The first 5 chapters are: one, The Psychologically Battered Child; two, Parental Influence and the Intergenerational Transmission of Trauma; three, Violent Men and Childhood Trauma; four, The Disconnect Between Parents Intention and Their Behavior; and five, The Effects of Socially Toxic Environment on Children. In chapter one, The Psychologically Battered Child, Dr. James Garbarino briefly describes the power of child abuse and how the mind, or the manifestations of child abuse, becomes more real than reality itself. In chapter two, Parental Influence and the Intergenerational Transmission of Trauma, the notion of nature versus nurture was introduced; genetic factors play a role, but cognitive experiences are rooted in the unconscious mind and plays a significant part in our behaviors/habits. Hence, being re-exposed to current experiences may reactivate memories that weren’t fully processed as a child, and therapeutic interventions are available to access unprocessed memories, as well as, to deal with suppressed memories that may have been triggered; in order to, process them as an adult, then continue to function/operate in life (The Glendon Association, 2015).

In chapter three, Violent Men and Childhood Trauma, Dr. James Garbarino discusses how he has worked with many prison men, or men on death row, who are guilty of murder; he said he treats them like untreated traumatized victims inhabiting the bodies of dangerous men. Moreover, these men are unaware of the ‘wounded child’ and the fear of that child; forbye, they aren’t capable of spontaneously talking about it. For example, one of the men was abandoned at a young age by his mother who was a drug addicted; he wasn’t interested in talking with others, but when Dr. James Garbarino approached him and expressed compassion towards how awful he must have felt as a child, he was able to access that pain that he had previously buried and ignored, then he couldn’t stop talking. In chapter four, The Disconnect Between Parents Intention and Their Behavior, he talks about how people don’t have full control over their behaviors and many behaviors are unconscious reactions coming from the unhealed and still hurt child. And, in chapter five, The Effects of Socially Toxic Environment on Children, Dr. James Garbarino announces that managing the internet is a requisite for parenting and childcare; today’s information era makes it more complex to analyze the source of children's behaviors because, children are being exposed to virtually everything (The Glendon Association, 2015). 

The next 5 chapters are: one, Parenting Guidelines; two, Parents as Role Models; three, The Socialization of Boys and Girls; four, Promoting Resilience in Boys; and five, Resilience and Hardiness. In chapter six, Parenting Guidelines, Dr. James Garbarino suggests that parents build positive relationships with their children and ensure that they will love them unconditionally to prevent children from developing secret lives; consequently, raising a self-disclose child with respect, tolerance, and trust. In chapter seven, Parents as Role Models, he emphasizes the impact parents have on their children when he stated who parents are influence who their children become. In chapter eight, The Socialization of Boys and Girls, androgynism and gender-blind policies are characterized as principles of power and growth; allowing children more freedom and flexibility to exercise both feminine and masculine qualities give children the opportunity to see themselves for who they really are without the resistance of social conditionings, stereotypes, and expectations (The Glendon Association, 2015).  

In chapter nine, Promoting Resilience in Boys, Dr. James Garbarino talks about how we need to remove those stereotypes about men being uncompassionate, but typically levelheaded; men are emotional human-beings too. Therefore, we need to focus on whether our intentions are child-specific, or gender-specific; moreover, allow boys to acknowledge the more feminine aspects to their personalities and sort themselves out base on their individual characteristics and temperaments without worrying unnecessarily. And, in chapter ten, Resilience and Hardiness, he notes that hardiness can be trait that demonstrates an average intelligence with a positive-outlook and the less likelihood of traumatization, but by no means is resilience a trait; resilience is the ability to face adversity and properly deal with it accordingly (The Glendon Association, 2015). 

The last 5 chapters are: one, Aggression in Girls and Boys; two, Secrecy in Girls; three, Lack of Parental Awareness; four, The Advantages of Predictability in Parenting; and five, Dr. Garbarino’s Path to Study Human Development. In chapter eleven, Aggression in Girls and Boys, Dr. James Garbarino examines what shapes and causes aggression; meanwhile, discusses the phenomenon between boys' and girls' attachments styles when children face parental issues (e.g., problematic parental factors can fall anywhere within the spectrum from too much control to complete abandonment). In chapter twelve, Secrecy in Girls, influences on the “girl culture” which are triggered by negative attribution bias (e.g., subjective versus objective influences) and archetypes/stereotypes are discussed; in conjunction with, why approximately 80% of girls said their parents didn’t know that they were afraid during school hours and have contemplated suicide. Dr. Garbarino references these studies to make his case about how girls are more prone to believe that they can help and heal others which often at time leads into codependency. Furthermore, many girls feel embarrass when they are being hurt by their significant others; hence, not having the capacity to positively influence their partner makes them inadequate and reluctant to seek help (The Glendon Association, 2015).

In chapter thirteen, Lack of Parental Awareness, Dr. Garbarino makes the claim that not even professions can reliably tell who is lying and who isn’t; he said that the only difference between law officials and parents is that an officer has a high-level of confidence in their belief when making accusations, but the validity is still the same. In chapter fourteen, The Advantages of Predictability in Parenting, he notes that predictability is an asset in relationships (e.g., bipolar parents are difficult to deal with because, their spontaneous and unpredictable behaviors make it hard to modulate an appropriate response, or plan of action). Finally, in chapter fifteen, Dr. Garbarino’s Path to Study Human Development, Dr. Garbarino briefly makes connections between his past experiences and childhood difficulties that has led him into his career path. Dr. Garbarino majored in history and political philosophy; meanwhile, saw working with children as a hobby. Nevertheless, being left at a very young age to momentarily nurture a baby brought him into his experience as an educator; in which, both worlds merged (The Glendon Association, 2015). 

The Different Socialization of Boys and Girls in Society 

In 1975, Title IX of the Education Amendments Act stated that no one should be excluded, or denied, or be subjected to discrimination under federal funded educational program, or activities, based on sex (Parkay, 2020, p. 163). The law requires that both sexes have equal opportunities and privileges (e.g. coaches, sports equipment, resources, and facilities); however, contact sports (e.g. football, wrestling and boxing) are available separately based on gender (Parkay, 2020, p. 271). Today, socially constructed differences are heavily influenced by the media’s perceptions of gender roles, and socialization patterns are embedded into schools’ curriculum and reinforced by same-sex peers (Gollnick and Chinn, 2017, p. 86-87).  

Areas of Strength 

Considering today’s 21st century educational reform movement, I’ve noted three areas of strength. One, emphasizing positive family relationships; it’s important to discuss rules and guidelines at home (as well as, for school) to reinforce positive behaviors. Two, classroom rules and guidelines that move away from traditional fear-based practices to more logical-consequences that promote understanding. And, three, finding new ways to align technology with humanity and aspire higher learning. From chapter eleven, studies show that girls are more prone to developing anxious attachment styles and boys are more to developing detached attachment styles; opposed to, developing a secure attachment style when faced with adversity at youth (The Glendon Association, 2015). Consequently, regarding their developed persona/character, the messages that we are conveying at home and schools influence children's cognitive structuring and response, whether it’s more subtle, or aggressive (The Glendon Association, 2015). 

Areas of Improvement 

After watching the video, I’ve noted three areas for improvement/weaknesses. One, the media exposure of violence and the increasingly easy access to information. Two, the disconnection between behaviors and intentions in both parents and teachers. And, three, chaos/disorder at home and/or school and unpredictability. In chapter ten, Dr. Garbarino uses an analogy to describe chaos; he said they live in a difficult sea, but no one teaches them how to swim. Instead of promoting diversity, exercising positive tolerance, developing resilience, we are restricting children with social gender-specific expectations.     

Alternate Strategies: Nevertheless, here are three alternative strategies: one, promote and celebrate resilience; two, design gender blind policies/plans and move towards androgynism to balance feminine and male aspects/energy; and three, practice mindfulness and self-analyze teaching behaviors to monitor influences that affect children cognitive structuring. Although females had to fight for equality in many aspects of life, we are now seeing that women have more freedom when it comes to exercising feminine and male qualities; hence, women are more androgynous than male (e.g. Dr. Garbarino highlighted how it’s more acceptable for women to wear both pants and skirts, but not otherwise). This gives more power to women! However, as mentioned in chapter twelve, women continue to battle with social subjective sources of esteem which are weighed by peer-affirmation on abstract concepts like beauty; opposed to, meeting that sense of acceptance, esteem, and belongingness through merely empirical/objective evidence based on developed skills like tackling and running, and/or repair services (The Glendon Association, 2015). 


Gollnick, D. M., & Chinn, P. C. (2017). Multicultural Education in a Pluralistic Society. Boston: Pearson.  

Parkay, F. W. (2020). Becoming a Teacher. Boston, MA: Pearson Education.    

The Glendon Association. (2015, February 23). An Interview with Dr. James Garbarino - The Impact of Parenting on Child Development: The Glendon Association: PsychAlive - Video Streaming. Retrieved from https://psychalivemedia.pivotshare.com/media/an-interview-with-dr-james-garbarino-the-impact-of-parenting-on-child-development/20879/feature.