You see a mother in a supermarket slap her child.

Vous voyez une mère dans un supermarché donner une gifle à son enfant.

  • Depending on what country I am in, it would not surprise me.
  • depends how and why she slapped him
  • I am horrified. If she seems abusive further, I confront her.
  • I don't think my yelling at the mother would change her habits, but I might ask the people who work at the supermarket if they've seen the mother before, and get more information about her.
  • If it were on the face maybe say something but on the butt I would not.
  • I stare in shock.
  • I would be disturbed, and think about the other ways in which this woman probably treats her child poorly. However I wouldn't go up to her and intervene, because it's not really my place.
  • I would be feel extremely angry inside. I don't know whether or not I would intervene. I think it would depend on who I was with and the manner in which the slap occurred, how the people around me were acting, and how I felt at that moment.
  • I would be furious, because physical abuse is the wrong way to teach a child a lesson, but I wouldn't intervene in the situation
  • I would be horrified
  • I would be horrified, but not say anything unless the child was visibly hurt.
  • I would be shocked and angry.
  • I would be shocked and if this happened repeatedly I would call the police
  • I would be uncomfortable but probably not say anything
  • I would feel bad for the child, but I wouldn't think too badly on the mother because that's a reasonable punishment if the child were misbehaving.
  • I would feel empathy for the child: I don't believe hitting a child helps them grow or become good members of society.
  • I would feel very uncomfortable and would not know exactly what to do. I would see if the child looks hurt or if there are other signs of abuse and call the police if the signs are major.
  • I would report it to the manager of the store.
  • i would think that child must have done something bad. But public embarassment is unnecessary
  • I would think the child may have done something wrong, but the mother is too violent.
  • Say nothing, but disapprove.
  • Unless she does it repeatedly, I would not intervene, because one hit doesn't necessarily constitute domestic abuse demanding outside intervention.
  • Cela ne me regarde pas.
  • Ce n'est pas de cette manière que je compte éduquer mes enfants mais une gifle reste dans l'acceptable.
  • Ce n'est pas mes affaires, je ne me mêle pas de se qui ne me regarde pas car j'aimerais que les autres fassent de même si nos situation était inversée
  • je ferai rien, parce que je ne peu pas être plus indulgent et plus clément qu'une maman pour son enfant. Du coup, il a eu une gifle, c'est qu'il a mérité xP
    Et que sa maman vise à l'éduquer ainsi.
  • Je lui explique que les gifles n'étaient et ne seront jamais une solution pour élever les enfants
  • je ne fais rien
  • Je ne fais rien, le comportement des deux est ridicule.
  • Je ne sais pas pourquoi elle fait ça, donc je n'agis pas.Je ne dispose pas des informations pour établir une solution plus adaptée
  • je ne suis pas choqué, ce n'est pas de la maltraitance.
  • je pense que certains enfants ont moins de chance que d'autres dans leur éducation
  • Je scrute discrètement la scène pour connaître la raison de ce geste. Si c'était justifié, je m'en vais. En revanche, en cas de problème vis-à-vis de l'enfant, j'irai lui porter assistance et tenterai de raisonner la mère.
  • Je suis choqué.
  • Je suis choqué mais je n'interviens pas
  • le pauvre enfant
  • Si c'est pédagogique je n'ai rien contre, si c'est gratuit ou trop violent j'interviens.
  • Si l'enfant ne pleure pas, ça me va.
  • Tout dépend du contexte et de la force de la gifle, mais à priori, je ne suis pas choqué outre mesure et n'interviens pas
  • tristesse si cela semble injustifié, rien si justifié

Discussion

J’ai l’impression que les réponses sont aussi différentes au sein de nos pays qu’elles le sont entre eux. J’imagine que nous avons à peu près le même système d’éducation, qu’en pensez vous ?

Je pense que du fait de nos origines distinctes nous ne pourrions pas avoir la même réaction. Pour certains ce geste est tellement inhabituel qu’il en devient choquant. Tandis que pour d’autres ainsi que moi même c’est tout à fait acceptable de gifler un enfant qui ne veut pas écouter. D’autant plus que c’est un enfant pas un adolescent. En effet, un adolescent et censé être un peu plus compréhensif pour que l’on ait pas à le frapper pour qu’il nous écoute.
En outre, j’aimerais savoir à quelle moment la fessée a disparu de nos éducations ?

Je pense que les comportements des parents vis à vis leurs enfants en plein public est différent d’une culture à une autre, d’une origine à une autre… Personnellement, il me semble que le fait de punir des enfants de cette manière est choquant vu qu’avec la violence ne peut jamais aboutir à la solution. Et je pense que l’éducation joue un rôle primordial dans la manière de traiter les enfants ..

The American students were shocked, disturbed, or horrified, and they felt that violence is not the best way to raise a child. The French students felt that it was none of the business and the slap was justified depending on the situation. My theory is that American parents are a lot softer towards their children when compared to other countries. Did your parents hit you as a child, and if they did hit you, do you think there could have been a better way to discipline?

@Mathieu I think that American parents are a lot softer towards their children when compared to other parents.
@dwar My parents were not born in America and they were a lot more prone to using violence as a means of discipline. After a certain age I got too big and that is when violence as a form of punishment stopped.

It seemed to me that both sides were shocked but generally wouldn’t do anything. It seemed, however, that more people on the French side seemed okay with it or believed that the child deserved it in someway. I believe since the responsibility of how a child is raised is up to the parent opposed to the child being responsible for their actions more so in French culture, a parent’s course of action with the discipline of their child is their decision. Do any of the French students think this could be true or a possible factor?

The range of answers seemed more or less the same to me in both countries. How common do you think that corporal punishment is in French families (both among French-born parents and immigrants)?

Following @aokello’s comment, it could be the importance of raising one’s children to be respectful and a good citizen that motivates the responses on both sides, especially the French side. If the parent sees it fit that their children will learn based on physical punishment, they might see it as not a big deal to do so. I do not necessarily agree with this mindset, but it could the cause of the differences between the sides.

I have the same question as @malper. Essentially American student responded with something like horrified or shocked, while many of the French students responded that they were indifferent, either because it isn’t their business or because it doesn’t bother them. Is this because corporal punishment is more commonly used in French families? Or is it thought that whatever a parent decides for their kids is best, so corporal punishment is ok if parents decide it? Or maybe there are less negative connotations surrounding corporal punishment in France?

I think another reason why the Americans are more appalled by this behavior is because we have been taught to associate physical punishment by a superior to a subordinate (the parent is superior in this situation) with an abuse of power. Breaking the touch barrier is much more serious, because there are parents who have anger problems - these could be due to financial problems, alcoholism, or other things. The prevalence of these poor traits forces us to be more wary of “violent” acts like this. In general, I think the difference in response arises from the way that the words are interpreted. The American students likely took it to have a mean or harmful intention, whereas the French just see it as a way to instruct the child about proper behavior.

I agree with the observations made by @frenchisinteresting however I am unsure whether it is correct to say that American parents are a lot softer than French parents in the treatment of their children. I think it is a matter of culture. After all, each society decides what it deems right and wrong. In some societies hitting a child after wrongdoing or disobedience is completely normal. In other societies, such wrongdoing is treated differently. It is true that some punishments seem harsher than others but most parents act based on the norms in their society.

Apparemment, dans cette discussion, on cherche à savoir si la violence est une bonne méthode pour éduquer nos enfants ou pas, et sinon, c’est quoi la meilleure méthode pour la faire..
Certes, chacun de nous à était élevé d’une méthode différente de l’autre. Je me demande est ce que nous somme satisfait de l’éducation que nous avons eu et si on veut y changer quelque chose, ça serait quoi ?

Je n’irai pas jusqu’à dire que les punitions corporelles soient si présentes que ça en France, mais elles en font (faisaient ?) partie. Après, il y a une différence à faire entre mettre une gifle symbolique à un enfant, et battre son enfant. Pour moi, la première situation c’est surtout un geste, pour bien faire comprendre que l’enfant a commis une bêtise. Bien sûr qu’il ne faut pas mettre une baffe forte à un enfant, et je pense que n’importe quelle personne témoin d’une grande violence envers un enfant interviendrait. Si un parent décide que son enfant a mérité d’être puni, c’est qu’il a jugé que c’était le cas, et je ne me sens pas d’intervenir ou juger la personne ne connaissant rien du contexte.

@chaf.madkour je ne pense pas que les parents qui donne une gifle à leur enfant se sentent particulièrement plus violent. Lorsqu’une de ces gifles est donnée, c’est plus dans un soucis d’éducation que de violence (de faire mal à autrui). Après c’est comme tout, il y a des extrêmes à ne pas dépasser…

C’est assez ironique de voir que dans la société américaine, qui à une image à travers le monde plus violente que l’Europe d’un point de vue économique ou sociétale ( contrôle des armes, violences policières,…) , semble choquée par cela.

Je ne pense pas qu’une gifle soit la bonne solution, vaut mieux une grosse fessée, après il ne faut pas en abuser, il faut que cela soit exceptionnellement dans le cas d’une grosse bêtise, pour que l’enfant puisse bien comprendre l’importance de ces actes. Les enfants qui sont frappés régulièrement ne ressentent plus cette peur éprouvée en sachant la fessé qui les attend.

@anogues I think you make a really good point that the image of America seen by the rest of the world and propagated by the media is one of violence, particularly in the “economic and societal” sense. My personal experience is that, and others may disagree with me, how a child is raised or educated by their parents varies widely across the United States. The way that I was raised, my parents abhorred using any kind of physical discipline, but my best friend’s mother regularly slapped him (although never in public, and that might just be a preventative measure against embarrassment). I think that the group of people you ask would highly affect the answers you get (like @frenchisinteresting said). Many Americans, I believe, would react very similarly to the French responses (i. e., with indifference on the account that they believe smacking a child may be a good form of child-rearing). These responses may be more in line with the media-propagated image of America that you are familiar with.

I largely agree with @ lc2017 (in the sense that parental behavior varies widely across the US). However, I believe that in America there may be more of a “stigma” associated with physical abuse, and therefore the abuse - when it occurs - is very private. On a superficial level, I would say that I only know of a couple people whose parents ever slapped them or hit them - however, on a deeper level, I would say that I probably know more who just never shared it out loud.

Ce qui est grave dans cet acte plutôt, c’est que cette violence passera dans les enfants aussi et que ça va être transmis dans les générations d’avenir et du coup, le problème deviendra de plus en plus grave et élargi dans tout pays et toute culture.

Ce qui est grave dans cet acte plutôt, c’est que cette violence passera dans les enfants aussi et que ça va être transmis dans les générations d’avenir et du coup, le problème deviendra de plus en plus grave et élargi dans tout pays et toute culture.

Ce qui est grave dans cet acte plutôt, c’est que cette violence passera dans les enfants aussi et que ça va être transmis dans les générations d’avenir et du coup, le problème deviendra de plus en plus grave et élargi dans tout pays et toute culture.

@chaf.madkour I completely agree - violence can be passed down through generations, and it also strains immediate relationships. My parents did hit me a few times as a kid but only ever spanked (on my bum), and my dad always told me that you can’t hit a child anywhere else on their body. He said that hitting the bum is okay because it’s literally all fat, so you won’t hurt the child permanently, and you should never hit a child with something (only with your hand). He said that hitting with the hand means you can feel how much pressure you’re applying, which is another measure against actually hurting your child. Now that I’m older, I don’t hold any resentment for being spanked as a kid - I definitely deserved them - and I know that any other form of physical punishment is definitely not okay. I think that spankings are okay if the child is not being receptive to other forms of punishment (for example, I was spanked for reading books under the table instead of doing my homework. This was after my dad had told me off multiple times and my mom had locked away all of my books in a suitcase. The reason I had a book was because my dad got my books back for me. He’s a softie.)

On the other hand, one of my friends - who also has Chinese parents - received the majority of his punishments physically. His parents would hit him with anything that was currently in their hands - he told me that his mom’s favorite “weapon” was the rice paddle. His relationship with his family is really strained and he is incapable of comprehending that people like to spend time with their families. It’s really heartbreaking because he’s a really kind person, but his emotional responses have been so stunted from his upbringing that he is really poor at expressing himself and his feelings and will often lash out verbally.

Personnellement, je suis totalement contre l’utilisation de la violence, je trouve que ce n’est pas vraiment efficace. Cependant, @frenchisinteresting, tu as dit que que la plupart des parents américains sont “soft”, je me demande quelles sont les autres méthodes utilisées pour éduquer leurs enfants.

@rrambaud I agree with you that not all physical punishment is physical abuse. It becomes abuse when it substantially hurts them, or it becomes repetitive and regular. I also agree that upbringing varies wildly from family to family. In my family, we were generally punished verbally or with things like not being allowed to go to a friend’s house, but for more serious things we would sometimes be physically punished. I do think that mhk is right in that there’s a pretty bad stigma associated with it, and it probably occurs more often than we think, but just in the home rather than in public.

@hanine Other methods of punishment might be just verbal or through grounding (like I mentioned above), but I also feel (and this is completely based on what I’ve observed from the many families I babysat for in high school) that parents are less strict with their kids than they used to be; I feel like many of the kids I babysat could get away with murder and their parents wouldn’t do anything about it. I’m not sure what might have changed, though.

@hanine I agree with you – I am also completely against corporal punishment. I think that it’s teaches the wrong lesson (that violence can get you what you want), and more importantly I think there are more effective ways of disciplining children. In terms of what other methods parents use – there is verbal discipline, revoking privileges of toys/games/computer/etc., being grounded, and so forth. I’m not a parent so I can’t really speak to what is most effective, but at least in my family these were all pretty effective.

Pour ma part je ne suis pas complètement d’accord avec chaf. madkour. Certes, si l’enfant est battu régulièrement, pour faire mal, etc… il sera marqué à vie, et pourra (ou non) transmettre cette violence à ses enfants. Mais ce genre de cas reste minoritaire, on ne peut donc pas parler de généralisation sur l’ensemble d’un pays. Lorsqu’il est fait mention d’une gifle à un enfant, je pense plus à un geste symbolique qu’à une réelle volonté de blesser l’enfant. Quand il grandira, il se rendra compte que c’était justifier sur le moment (comme certaines personnes l’ont dit ici, que les quelques fessées qu’ils se sont prit étaient “méritées”). Donc je ne pense pas qu’il y aura une quelconque violence qui se répandra dans la société, puisque pour moi, parler de violence, c’est trop extrême. C’est juste une certaine forme d’éducation, même si certaines personnes sont contre.

I agree that there is a difference between child abuse and a spanking but then there is a line that can be crossed in trying to discipline your child. I’d say that line is definitely crossed when hit anywhere other than the butt. I also feel that there should be varying degrees of punishments but once again that is where the parent has to understand their child and know what would work and would not. Do people think one day physical punishments won’t be necessary entirely?

Pour appuyer ce que dis notre cher @rrambaud il faut bien différencier des parents violents qui frappent leur enfant régulièrement et sans retenue, d’un parent qui gifle son enfant (en retenant sa force, le but n’est pas de faire mal). De nos jours c’est plus facile il suffit de le priver de jeux vidéos.

Bon, @Laika, moi aussi j’ai la même constatation, les parents aujourd’hui sont moins strictes partout. Je ne trouve pas une explication claire, mais je pense qu’avec cette évolution énorme de la technologie, les enfants sont devenus de plus en plus séparés de leurs parents et absorbés dans leur monde virtuel. Ils sont devenus des rebelles et refusent toute correction. Du coup les pauvres parents sont “helpless”.

@aokello
It is interesting to note that corporal punishment is prevalent mainly in less developed countries. Perhaps as technology becomes more widespread and lesser developed countries become more developed, corporal punishment may someday be very rare. It is hard to say though because something like corporal punishment is seen as normal in some cultures so it may be difficult to get rid of.

There are many ways of doing things. People can choose which method they want to use as long as the method works.
That being said, I am not a supporter of corporal punishment. I believe that corporal punishment builds resentment and fear in the child.
A child should obey his or her parents out of respect not out of fear.
I think that the best method of raising a child involves rewards and showing the child what is right and wrong. If the child does something good then reward the child, and if the child does something bad then take away rewards.

@frenchisinteresting , tu as tout à fait raison, je partage ton point de vue. @math.ceil, espérons qu’un jour la punition corporelle disparaisse …

Je partage pleinement ton avis @frenchisinteresting ! ta phrase ” If the child does something good then reward the child, and if the child does something bad then take away rewards” est bien expressive et résume tout !! c’est de cette manière qu’on doit élever et traiter nos enfants ! les punitions corporelles ne peuvent mener à rien !! Pire que ça, elles rendent l’enfant encore plus agressif !

Also, Jarnault, we really do not have a formal or informal form for “you.” You as a singular, you as a plural, whether formal or informal, is always you. Thou is not used ever in conversation. Personally, I know that thou is used in the Catholic religion in prayer and in mass, but no one would use thou in public conversation.

@jarnault
It is quite unlikely to find anyone who uses the word “thou” in modern English. It is used in archaic works of literature, the Bible, and some poetry but not everyday speech.
I find it odd that we have only the word “you” regardless of whether we are speaking formally, informally, in the singular sense or in the plural sense.
Oddly enough, the word “thou,” used to be the equivalent of “tu” while “you” was the equivalent of “vous.”

@dgurel, content que tu sois d’accord avec ce que j’ai dit! Du coup j’ai une question, tu dis que l’usage unique de “you” en anglais brise les barrières entre les personnes, et je suis tout à fait d’accord avec ça, mais comment faîtes vous pour exprimer votre respect pour une personne que vous rencontrez, plus âgée que vous par exemple, étant donné que vous n’avez pas de vouvoiement? J’ai l’impression que pour montrer son respect pour une personne, comme le langage ne le permet pas, cela se fait de manière plus implicite chez vous, je me trompe ?

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