Babies Documentary Analysis

analytical Essay
1261 words
1261 words

The French documentary Babies shows the first year of development of four different babies who live in four completely different environments. The film follows Ponijao, a little girl from Namibia, Bayar, a little boy from Mongolia, Mari, a girl from Tokyo, and Hattie, a girl from San Francisco. Even though the babies live in very dissimilar parts of the world, their physical, cognitive, and social development seem to all follow a set pattern. On the other hand, the babies learn to do some activities distinctive to their environment by watching their parents and siblings. Therefore, Babies provides evidence to support both the nature and nurture sides of the debate. All four babies followed a similar pattern of gross-motor development. They …show more content…

On the nature side of the debate, every baby cried when they were trying to communicate to their caregiver. Crying is universal because it is the only way that babies can alert their caregiver that something is wrong. Furthermore, each baby cooed, babbled, and cried without prompting. Ponijao babbles when her mother pats her on the back because she likes the sound it makes. Bayar’s brother keeps putting a strip of fabric in his face, making him cry out of annoyance. Mari babbles and has a “conversation” with another baby on one of her visits to the park. Hattie also starts saying syllables on her own. However, nurture plays a huge role in language development as well. Each baby was read to, spoken to, sung to, or a mixture of the former. Without prompting from his mother, Bayar would not be able to copy the sounds that she makes to try to get him to speak. Hattie can say “no” and “uh oh”, which are English phrases. Her parents would have taught her how to say those words. In fact, her mother reads to her, and she imitates the sounds her mother makes while reading. This proves that without both heredity and environment, language would never develop in an infant. They need to have an inborn ability to quickly and easily learn vocabulary and grammar during the critical periods, but they also need to hear and interact with language in their …show more content…

Each of the babies could be classified into one of Chess and Thomas’ categories of temperament. First, Ponijao could be considered an easy baby since she is usually in an upbeat mood. She enjoys playing with others, she is curious, and she is happy to explore on her own. An example of this is when she crawls through the mud puddle just because she wanted to. Next, Bayar seems like a slow-to-warm-up baby. He is very tolerant of his surroundings, including his older brother and all the farm animals that live around him. In one scene of the film, a rooster jumps into his bed and walks around, but Bayar does not even seem to care. He is not very active and is content just being alone, and he rarely gets upset but also rarely gets very excited by anything. Finally, both Mari and Hattie seem like difficult babies. Mari seems to cry more often than not. She throws a massive tantrum when she cannot complete the puzzle and cries loudly when she sees a zoo animal. Hattie is less irritable but still presents many challenges to her parents. She seems to dislike any change and desires to be more independent. She tries to feed herself well before other babies try to do the same. During a class with her parents, when they are in the middle of singing a song, she just gets up and walks to the door as if she is ready to leave. Babies presents temperament as influenced mostly by nature, but it is possible that nurture is a

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how the french documentary babies shows the first year of development of four different babies who live in four completely different environments.
  • Analyzes how the similarities and differences between the babies are caused by both nature and nurture.
  • Analyzes how the film shows that language development is a product of nature and nurture.
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