Looking Through the Glasses: J. D. Salinger’s Wise Children and Gifted Education

Gifted children are often Big Picture thinkers (Schultz & Delisle, 1997). Even as young children, they may ask profound questions and view life from the perspective of The Most Important Things: meaning, goodness, truth, spirituality, death, and the like. J. D. Salinger’s stories about the gifted and precocious Glass children offer a vivid, provocative, and very useful description of a spiritual Big Picture perspective on life. This essay describes the Glasses’ spiritual development and draws out implications of their thinking and dilemmas for a critique of gifted education. It suggests that gifted education can adequately address the spiritual life of gifted students and other “Big Picture” perspectives only by becoming concerned with educating gifted children for life.

Barry Grant
University of Maryland/University College, Schwdbisch Gmund, Germany

Gifted Child Quarterly, Vol. 46, No. 1, 6-14 (2002)
DOI: 10.1177/001698620204600102