Childhood, Anthropology of

The anthropology of childhood explores the commonalities and diversity of children’s lives around the world. A substantial body of anthropological research on children and childhood exists in the traditional four fields of anthropology (archaeology, cultural anthropology, physical/biological anthropology, and linguistics) as well as in multiple subfields, including educational anthropology, medical anthropology, sociolinguistics, and psychological anthropology. The Anthropology of Children and Youth Interest Group of the American Anthropological Association, established in 2007, provides a platform for contemporary research on children and youth. The focus of the anthropology of childhood is that the cultural context is the key influence on children’s lives because it shapes their circumstances and the meanings attached to those circumstances.

This entry explores the history of the anthropology of childhood and theoretical points of ...

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