Recent decades have seen an upsurge of research with and about young children, their families and communities. The Handbook of Early Childhood Research will provide a landmark overview of the field of early childhood research and will set an agenda for early childhood research into the future. It includes 31 chapters provided by internationally recognized experts in early childhood research. The team of international contributors apply their expertise to conceptual and methodological issues in research and to relevant fields of practice and policy. The Handbook recognizes the main contexts of early childhood research: home and family contexts; out-of-home contexts such as services for young children and their families; and broader societal contexts of that evoke risk for young children. The Handbook includes sections on: the field of early childhood research and its key contributions new theories and theoretical approaches in early childhood research collecting and analysing data applications of early childhood research This Handbook will become the valuable reference text for students, practitioners and researchers from across the social sciences and beyond who are engaged in research with young children.
Chapter 7: Theorizing Identities in Early Childhood
Theorizing Identities in Early Childhood
Age has been identified as one of the many identity categories that shape our lives and influence the extent to which we are able to exercise agency. In the 1990s, Prout and James (1997: 8) stated that the new paradigm in childhood studies should consider age, and young age in particular, as a variable of social analysis, inseparable from other variables such as class, gender, or ethnicity. Children are increasingly the focus of research and policy. However, ‘the child’ is still often considered as a unified, universal category, and the intersection with other markers of difference and inequality is not always clearly articulated. The field of early childhood and education is no exception. ...