The Idle Parent

The Idle Parent (2009) by Tom Hodgkinson is an amusing take on being a parent that espouses being relaxed and avoiding being obsessed by material things and expensive trips.

Hodgkinson is a prodigy of work and intelligence who went to Westminster School and Cambridge. He then went on to be joint head of creative development at The Guardian. After that and a number of successful books he founded ‘The Idler’ magazine and the ‘Idler Academy’.

He recommends people should work less. It’s not clear if this should be done before or after becoming very successful like he has.

At any rate, the book suggests spending more time with your kids and not working so much and avoiding spending money for their enjoyment but instead being creative. It’s undoubtedly decent advice. However, it’s all a bit over the top, for many, possibly most people going to work is about affording a house and a reasonably amusing life. He’s also opposed to the evils of capitalism and the industrial revolution which is fairly tired.

Still, it’s not a bad book and remembering to relax with kids and not be helicopter parents is definitely a good idea.


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