Song for Sunday – Teach your children by CSNY

With the start of semester on Monday, I looked for a song with some connection to study or uni. It was pretty hard. There are quite a few negative ones (e.g., Pink Floyd’s “Another Brick in the Wall”), inappropriate ones (e.g., ABBA’s “When I kissed the teacher” ), ones for the end of semester (e.g., Alice Cooper’s “Schools Out”) or ones about rock and roll (e.g., the Ramones’ “Rock ‘n’ Roll High School”). There were also some potential one’s (sometimes with a fairly tenuous link) that weren’t available online.

I’ve ended up choosing “Teach your children” by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young from their 1970 album “Deja Vu.” I know we aren’t teaching children, but I thought it built on the reciprocal nature of education referred to in this week’s Saturday Quote by talking about adults teaching their children, and children teaching their parents. I also like the opening line (“You, who are on the road must have a code that you can live by”) as I emphasise that community engagement involves a principled approach.

Graham Nash has said the song was inspired by a photo by Diane Arbus, “Child with Toy Hand Grenade in Central Park,” and encourages us to think about the messages we give to children about war and other social issues.

If you liked this post please follow my blog (top right-hand corner of the blog), and you might like to watch some previous songs for Sunday:

  1. Luka” by Suzanne Vega
  2. “Treaty” by Yothu Yindi
  3. “Child in Time” by Deep Purple (and a version by Blackmore’s Night)
  4. John Lennon’s “Image” by Playing for Change
  5. “Foolish Notion” by Holly Near
  6. “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas

About Graeme Stuart

Lecturer (Family Action Centre, Newcastle Uni), blogger (Sustaining Community), Alternatives to Violence Project facilitator, environmentalist, father. Passionate about families, community development, peace, sustainability.
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1 Response to Song for Sunday – Teach your children by CSNY

  1. cbecker53 says:

    I LOVE “Teach Your Children!” I always have. I’m thinking of reading it my mother’s funeral someday. “Don’t you ever ask them why; If they told you, you would cry. . .”

    Liked by 1 person

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