Children as Citizens

Citizenship is a key concept in the social and political sciences, which over the past two decades has also filtered into childhood studies. During this period, there has been a surge in theorizing and especially empirical studies of children as citizens in regard to rights and participation. The concept of citizenship, although commonly defined primarily in terms of the individual’s relationship to the nation-state, essentially also encompasses the self—other relationship in regard to local communities and global society—and extends beyond rights and into the realm of responsibilities, participation, and identity. In her 2007 article entitled, Inclusive Citizenship: Realizing the Potential, Ruth Lister refers to citizenship as a momentum concept (i.e., a developing concept which continually unleashes more and more egalitarian and anti-hierarchical potential). Today, ...

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