Childhood studies, children’s politics and participation: perspectives for processes of democratisation

Moran-Ellis, Jo and Sünker, Heinz (2018) Childhood studies, children’s politics and participation: perspectives for processes of democratisation. International Review of Sociology, 28 (2). pp. 277-297. ISSN 0390-6701

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From the early Frankfurt School through to the work of Manuel Castells, there has been a rich body of work on the cleavage between technological and social developments of the twentieth century in respect of the consequences for the constitution of subjectivity. However, little attention is paid to the role of children during their childhoods in attempts to bridge this gap beyond discussions about the democratic actors children will become when they are adults. This paper argues that only the full integration of children, during their childhoods, into democratic development of societies will prevent the deepening of the rift between technological and social progress. The paper traces the correspondence between the new childhood studies and those concepts of politics and politicisation which can support social progress towards an emancipatory social perspective undergirded by particular and democratisation of all areas of everyday life. Drawing on Bourdieu and ideas of participation as action, the paper critically examines the various mechanisms by which children are conventionally excluded from democratic participation and then explores how a deeper consideration of agency in childhood and social actorship opens up alternative mechanisms of inclusion and the concomitant expansion of the concept of democracy.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Participation, sociology of childhood, children, democracy
Schools and Departments: School of Law, Politics and Sociology > Sociology
Research Centres and Groups: Centre for Innovation and Research in Childhood and Youth
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Depositing User: Joanna Moran-Ellis
Date Deposited: 03 Mar 2020 12:35
Last Modified: 03 Mar 2020 12:45

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