Synopsis by Nathan Southern
Dr. Michael Thompson, Ph.D., wrote a sociological study of young boys growing up in the U.S. at the dawn of the new millennium, entitled Raising Cain: Protecting the Emotional Life of Boys; published in 1999, the work became a nationwide success and made the New York Times bestseller list. Now, Thompson and his co-author Dan Kindlon turn their book into a two-hour PBS documentary, Raising Cain. The two men carefully select a broad array of subjects -- from early childhood through late adolescence -- and, using a combination of interviews and one-on-one interaction -- evaluate how the challenges described in the Raising Cain book actually affect the young men on a day-to-day basis. More broadly, the documentary poses the question of how a contemporary American environment defines the lives of the subjects in question -- with the sociocultural landscape as a source of frustrations and roads to success.