Childhood

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Explain Aires' (1962) view on childhood in pre-industrial society.
He states that childhood as we know it did not exist. Children were 'little adults' and toys and games specifically for children didn't exist. Children were regarded as an economic assets.
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What is Shorter's (1975) view on the historical differences in childhood?
Attitudes were different due to high death rates and it was hard to emotionally invest in children. The modern notion of childhood began to emerge from the 13th century as the church increasingly saw children as fragile 'creatures of God'.
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What does Pilcher (1995) state about childhood?
The most important feature of the modern idea of childhood is separateness. Childhood is seen as a clear and distinct life stage.
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What is the Marxist view on childhood?
Children are very important to modern capitalism and this is why we have a new construct of childhood in the Western world.
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What does Bocock (1993) (Marxist) state about childhood?
Modern childhood facilitates capitalist goals by creating new consumers.
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What is the Functionalist view on childhood?
Crucial process in the modern family, young person socialised into a useful member of society.
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The Ik tribe in Uganda can be used as a cross cultural view on childhood. Explain this.
They can be extremely hostile to children as they view them as a drain on resources. They think that they should be made to fend for themselves as soon as they possibly can, this may mean from the age of 3.
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Punch's 2001 study of rural Bolivia is also a cross cultural example of childhood. Explain this.
She found that once children are about 5, they are expected to take work responsibilities at home and in the community without hesitation.
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The Tikopia tribe in the Western Pacific was studied by Firth (1970) to show that less valve is placed on children showing obedience to adult authority. Explain this.
He found that doing as you are told by a grown up in this area is regarded as a concession granted by the child, not a right to be expected by the adult.
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Children's sexual behavior is often viewed differently amongst people such as the Trobriand Islanders of the South-West Pacific. Explain this.
Malinowski (1957) found that adults took an attitude of 'tolerance and amused interest' towards children's sexual explorations and activities.
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Why has the position of the child changed?
The introduction of compulsory schooling, child protection and welfare legislation, declining family size and lower infant mortality.
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What does Postman (1994) believe about the future of childhood?
Childhood will disappear. The growth of TV will mean that no secrets will be kept from children and they will be exposed to more 'adult' things. Social blurring will mean there will be little distinction between adults and children.
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State some criticisms of Postman.
Brooks (2000)- Parents more obsessed with child safety. Children will become a major economic force (Marxism ISA).
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Lee (2001) takes a different view on the future of childhood. What is his view?
He believes that childhood is more complex and ambiguous and that children are dependent on parents but are independent in another sense.
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Which sociologist did a lifetime study on children's games and believes in a separate childhood culture/
Opie (1993) believes there is strong evidence of continued existence of culture. Their lifestime study on games and rhymes showed that children still make their separate culture.
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2 sociologists use official statistics to prove that childhood is in fact disappearing. Who are they and what is their view?
Margo and Dixon (2006) found that UK youth are near the top for many international league tables for drug abuse, self harm, sexual experiences etc. In 2007 Unicef survey, the UK was ranked 21st out of 25 for children's well being.
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What is toxic childhood and who's concept is it?
Palmer (2006) states that childhood is being commercialized to lead to a 'toxic childhood'. Other factors contributing to this is the increase of unhealthy food, poor sleep patterns and decline in emotional security.
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Who uses the term 'age patriarchy'?
Gittins (1998) uses the term to describe inequalities between adults and children.
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Have any sociologists produced concepts and ideas to consider the children's point of view?
Mason and Tipper (2008)- Children actively create their own definitions of who is family. Smart et al (2001)- study of divorce found that children were far from being passive victims, they were actively involved in trying to make the situationbetter
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Card 2

Front

What is Shorter's (1975) view on the historical differences in childhood?

Back

Attitudes were different due to high death rates and it was hard to emotionally invest in children. The modern notion of childhood began to emerge from the 13th century as the church increasingly saw children as fragile 'creatures of God'.

Card 3

Front

What does Pilcher (1995) state about childhood?

Back

Preview of the front of card 3

Card 4

Front

What is the Marxist view on childhood?

Back

Preview of the front of card 4

Card 5

Front

What does Bocock (1993) (Marxist) state about childhood?

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Preview of the front of card 5
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