Sociology 3.2

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  • Childhood 3.2.
    • March of progress view of childhood
      • Mause = 'The history of childhoods is a nightmare which we have only recently begun to awaken.
      • Suggest that children today are more valued, better cared for, protected and educated, have better health and more rights than previous generations
        • Reasons for this = Laws restricting children from paid work, compulsory schooling, child protection legislation, children's rights, decline in family size, better medicine and age laws
      • Sue Palmer - 'Toxic childhood'. Increased children with learning difficulties, drug abuse, self-harm, suicided due to a decline in family stability.
        • Many parents are too busy to play with their child so use 'electronic babysitters'
    • The Conflict view of childhood
      • They focus on the inequalities and risks that children face in the modern world - abandoned and unprotected.
      • Children in LEDC'S are more likely to be underweight and face discrimination and greater health problems
        • Bonke - Poor mothers are likely to have low-birth weight babies which effect physical and intellectual development
      • Holt - childhood in modern society is characterised by oppression, control and dominance of children by adults. They feel they need to free children from this 'child liberationism'.
        • Adult control can take extreme forms of physical, emotional and sexual abuse
      • Age Patriarchy Gittins - There is an age patriarchy of adult domination which keeps children subordinate.
        • Adults contol their child's spce, time, bodies and make them economically dependant as they are unable to work.
    • New sociology of childhood
      • Mayall - 'Adultist viewpoint' to describe the view of children as mere 'scoialisation projects' for adults to shape and evolve with the only interest being what they will be in the future.
      • They don't see children as simply adults in the making but as active agents who play a major part in creating their own childhood


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