If we approach the texts that medieval parents wrote for their children from the perspective of the literature for children written in the West since the nineteenth century, they can appear dry and dull. They are uncompromisingly didactic, and appear in particular to be lacking any overt interest in, expression of, and instruction in emotions. As Pascal Eitler, Stephanie Olsen, and Uffa Jensen argue, an express focus on children’s emotional states has been viewed as a modern development:

Beginning slowly at first, the nineteenth and twentieth centuries witnessed the gradual emergence of an unprecedented level of activity in, and potential for, considering, understanding, and describing children’s emotions, as well as shaping, regulating, coaching, or treating them with therapy… children became objects of emotional training and optimization, and, at the same time, subjects of emotional self-development…

(Eitler et al. 2014, p. 2)