This book has already proved itself as a course adoption leader in Childhood Studies. All of the strengths of the First Edition have been retained. The book is comprehensive and judged with the needs of students in mind. It is a model of clarity and precision and has been acknowledged as such in reviews and course feedback. The new edition thoroughly revises old entries and adds new ones. The book is the most accessible, relevant student introduction to this expanding, interdisciplinary field. It is an indispensable teaching text and an ideal prompt for researchers.
The question of whether there is a global childhood, which can describe or define the experiences of all children everywhere, is a complex one. Childhood studies has argued, for example, that childhood should be seen primarily as a social construction, a period of the life-course that takes particular forms in particular local contexts. However, at the same time, it also has to be acknowledged that childhood does have some more universal features. First, there are those arising from children's physical immaturity and their dependency on adults everywhere for basic survival needs. Notwithstanding that these needs are still open to some cultural interpretation with regard to the appropriate ways in ...