1932

Abstract

Abstract

Recent social scientific research on childhood is oddly ambivalent. Despite much theoretically creative and empirically innovative work, the sociology of childhood, as a subfield, is often uncomfortable with its own object of inquiry. I identify three possible sources of this sociological ambivalence. First, much work does not fully differentiate children from childhood. Second, much of the literature conflates the notion of childhood as a social construct with childhood as a social good. And third, the construction of childhood in some of the literature is incommensurate with the social policies designed to protect or empower children. This review further illuminates this threefold equivocation with a schematic review of the sociological literature on childhood written since the 1980s. I conclude by briefly suggesting how recent insights from historical and poststructural approaches have begun to alleviate this ambivalence.

Loading

Article metrics loading...

/content/journals/10.1146/annurev.soc.33.040406.131808
2007-08-11
2024-04-17
Loading full text...

Full text loading...

/content/journals/10.1146/annurev.soc.33.040406.131808
Loading
  • Article Type: Review Article
This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error