IBNA- Considered the most famous book on the subject 'Centuries of Childhood: A Social History of Family Life' by French scholar Philippe Ariès which brought a considerable academic influence has been published in Persian.
Known for its argument that the concept of "childhood" is a modern development, the book with its original title ‘L'enfant et la vie familiale sous l'ancien régime’ has been translated into Persian by Zainab Sadat Ghanizadeh and released by the Center for the Intellectual Developments of Children and Young Adults (CIDCYA) in Tehran.
In this pioneering and important book, Philippe Aries surveys children and their place in family life from the Middle Ages to the end of the eighteenth century. The first section of the book explores the gradual change from the medieval attitude to children, looked upon as small adults as soon as they were past infancy, to the seventeenth and eighteenth century awareness of the child as the focal point of family life.
Aries goes on to examine the schooling of children and the development of modern educational methods. In the second section, he describes the metamorphosis of the family- at first the family was a unit in which everything was open and public and children mingled with adults in the social life of the community; eventually the family become a closed or private society, within which children had a unique and important status.
Philippe Aries (1914-1984) studied at the Sorbonne and later became an expert on tropical agriculture. This he found only modestly absorbing and consequently took up historical research, describing his experiences in this area, in his autobiography, ‘Un historien du dimanche’.
His first interest was in demography, the starting point for his book, ‘Centuries of Childhood’ and for an earlier work ‘Histoire des populations francaises’. His later and more controversial works, focusing on the subject of death, include ‘Western Attitudes towards Death’ and ‘The Hour of Our Death’.
All Aries' books are outstanding examples of the discoveries which historians can make when they decide to concentrate on what Balzac claimed should be the province of the novel- that of writing the history of manners and of man's perception of himself