Constructions of childhood

Vicky Johnson, Andy West

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter looks at issues around the definition, perceptions and understandings of child and childhood, including the development of models and a paradigm towards the end of the century and its connections to children's rights. Since the inception of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) in 1989 and its almost universal ratification, the definition of a child has largely become accepted internationally as humans under the age of 18 years. The UNCRC has been signed by all countries and ratified by every country except the USA. The chapter points how the recognition of historical change highlighted contemporary global diversity and difference, and the variety of constructions of childhood around the world. Description and analysis of the construction of childhood was taken up by anthropologists and sociologists in the 1980s, with an increasing interest and focus on children within these disciplines. The importance of children's participation emerges through the paradigm's emphasis on children's own social agency.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChildren’s Participation in Global Contexts
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9781315680941
Publication statusPublished - 22 Nov 2018

Publication series

NameChildren’s Participation in Global Contexts


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