What Can Reading and Games Tell Us about Today's Children?
The present article treats changes in the learning environment of contemporary children as exacerbation of the “childhood crisis.” We believe that new research in the field of developmental psychology is required in order to apply cultural-historical theory to new data. The article presents two studies: one of them considers a preschool game based on contemporary cartoon plots, and the other considers how adolescents (eighth- to tenth-graders) read J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter books. The preschool study shows that the game has developmental potential and that its plots reproduce complex human relations. TheHarry Potter study shows that adolescents are attracted to bold and heroic stories with ambiguous and unknown outcomes.