Berry Mayall argues in this work that, since childhood is a permanent component of society, in order to understand how society works, we must take account of children as well as adults, otherwise our explanation omits an important social group. Children's lives are shaped by policies and practices, but they are also agents, who make a life for themselves through their relationships with adults and other children. This book argues that feminist theory and practice is useful for understanding childhood; we should start from the children's own accounts to show how the organization of social relations provides an explanation for their social position. This is a political book: through analysis of children's own descriptions and evaluations of childhood, it argues for an improved social status of childhood, including respecting children's rights. The book also shows that in order to understand childhood we must take account of both child-adult relations (generational relations) and gender relations. It is valuable reading for childhood sociologists and feminists, and for all those seeking to raise the social status of childhood.
It is highly recommended to students of childhood studies, at all levels.
"...explores some very timely and critical issues in the current development of Childhood Studies...It will be especially valuable for students because it integrates concrete empirical studies with reflection on underlying theoretical assumptions."-Leena Alanen, Professor in Early Childhood Education, University of Jyvaskyla, Finland
Series: UK Higher Education OUP Humanities & Social Sciences Health & Social Welfare
Tertiary; University or College
Number Of Pages: 224
Published: 1st May 2002
Publisher: Open University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 23.0 x 15.2
Weight (kg): 0.37