chapter  2
18 Pages

Obscenity in Children

W H E N we attempt to discuss obscenity in children, we are at once confronted with the difficulty of defining what we mean by this term. This difficulty arises out of the wide gap which exists between the understanding of the adult and of the child. Many words and acts which seem obscene to adults have little meaning of that nature to the child until this is impressed upon his mind by the attitudes of parents and other grown-ups. At one time or another the majority of children come into contact with language or behavior which has been outlawed by the standards of polite society. In all innocence the child may repeat words and acts of this kind, only to find, to his intense surprise, that these are greeted with exceeding disapproval by his elders. Moreover, parents and teachers frequently fail to realize that the child is innocent of bad intent upon such occasions, and assume that he is being deliberately naughty or unclean in thoughts and habits. Out of this misunderstanding of the child's motives many serious problems may arise.