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In the Western world, the concept of innocence has been central to modern definitions of childhood. In a legal context, innocence refers to the absence of guilt with respect to a crime or wrongdoing. In a religious context, innocence is defined as the absence of sin or moral transgression. While both of these definitions have shaped the construct of innocence as it relates to the child in a modern Western context, childhood innocence has, over time, become synonymous with other qualities believed to be characteristic of early human life, including a lack of experience or knowledge of the larger social world.

In contemporary North America, the innocence of children is often taken for granted and is frequently connected with current issues from childhood education and care ...

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