Mamaleh Knows Best
by Marjorie Ingall
- Discuss Ingall’s recipe for raising a successful child: what, according to her, are the necessary ingredients? What might you add to her list? Is there any part of her recipe that you might follow?
- Ingall states “Jewish-style child rearing is good not only for kids but also for parents.” What do you think she means by this? Would it work for you?
- Ingall dismisses the stereotype of the Jewish mother as a construct of Jewish men (and male comedians) at a particular point in American history, which has run its course. Do you agree that the stereotype is no longer culturally relevant? Why or why not?
- In Chapter 4, Ingall advises parents to encourage their kids to debate and argue. Why does she think this is important? Do you agree?
- Ingall tells the anecdote of a Nobel laureate who was asked as a child “did you ask a good question today?” Why is asking questions more important than answering them? Would everyone agree with this advice to children? Why are questions important within the Jewish tradition specifically?
- What is your takeaway from Mameleh Knows Best? Did you learn something new? How might you parent differently after reading the book?