What does the popularity of The Other Side of Truth by Beverly Naidoo tell us about what a society thinks about childhood at that given momen?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

There are a couple of elements in the question that might need to be sorted out a tad.  The first would be if there is a desire to assess how the society reading the work perceives childhood or the society being described perceives childhood.  I would say that the reaction to the book indicates that there is a contingent of the public that finds the narratives of children as being redemptive elements.  The fact that Sade, a preteen, is able to assume so much in terms of suffering, endurance, and empowerment is an element that cannot be denied in its appeal to audiences.  The reception the book received and the accolades conferred upon it reflect social orders' appreciation to Sade and what she represented.  Additionally, within such praise is a condemnation of the condition in nations where children are robbed of their childhood, forced to live in "silence and half truths."  One could say that in the popularity of the work, society thinks that nations that engage in barbaric practices to rob children of their chance at a formative childhood must be criticized and derided.