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.



Commonly used to embrace and describe the wide range of physical, social, psychological and emotional transactions that take place in the context of the family between parent and child during the years in which the child is dependent on the parent. As such it is both descriptive – identifying and illustrating what parents ‘do’ in relation to their children – and prescriptive, in the sense of defining that which parents are expected to do in order to fulfil their social, legal and other obligations in any given cultural context.

As with many of the other key concepts in this book, ‘parenting’ is difficult to define accurately and in its entirety, not least because, as with child and childhood, we all know from our first-hand experience ...

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