Children and Youth as Subjects, Objects, Agents


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"Each chapter makes a valuable and original contribution to the larger field of childhood and youth studies. Each author speaks with both passion and compassion about issues that too often are ignored or brushed aside. The collection as a whole is truly wonderful, bringing together such a diverse range of methodologies and foci into a cohesive and exciting whole." Katherine B. Rosier, Professor of Sociology, Central Michigan University, USA This textbook showcases innovative approaches to the interdisciplinary field of childhood and youth studies, examining how young people in a wide range of contemporary and historical contexts around the globe live their young lives as subjects, objects, and agents. The diverse contributions examine how children and youth are simultaneously constructed: as individual subjects through social processes and culturally-specific discourses; as objects of policy intervention and other adult power plays; and also as active agents who act on their world and make meaning even amidst conditions of social, political, and economic marginalization. In addition, the book is centrally engaged with questions about how researchers take into consideration children's and young people's own conceptions of themselves and how we conceptualize child and youth potentials for agency at different ages and stages of growing up. Each chapter discusses substantive research but also engages in self-reflection about methodology, positionality, and/or disciplinarity, thus making the volume especially useful for teaching. This book will be of interest to students and scholars across a range of disciplines, including childhood studies, youth studies, girls' studies, development studies, research methods, sociology, anthropology, education, history, geography, public policy, cultural studies, gender and women's studies, and global studies. Deborah Levison is a Professor at the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, USA. Mary Jo Maynes is a Professor of History at the University of Minnesota, USA. Frances Vavrus is a Professor in Comparative and International Development Education at the University of Minnesota, USA. .

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