This module sets out to investigate the social phenomenon of childhood and youth through an in depth exploration through what Qvortrup et al. (2009: 2) define as 'changing attitudes to children in the agenda-setting western world'. Along with the recommended The Palgrave Handbook of Childhood Studies, this introductory module considers distinct themes as critical perspectives in studying childhood and youth at Master's level in order to provide students with a sound understanding of the conceptual and theoretical foundations of childhood and youth studies. The module examines the academic development of the now interdisciplinary social studies of childhood and youth and seeks to critically examine the key concepts in childhood and youth studies and their use in conceptual understandings of children's and young people's everyday lives.
The module explores the historical and socio-economic contexts of childhood and youth and outlines how the changing social and cultural constructions of childhood and youth impact on lived realities in diverse and differing contexts. Childhood and youth scholarships concerned with generational relations in both micro and macro analyses have also been highly influential in contemporary academic debate and the module investigates generational perspectives in changing interdependencies in late modernity and in a globalised world. The impact of the UNCRC is critically considered through the lived realities lens using in depth examinations of evidence from children's and young people's everyday lives emphasising the importance of meaningful participation and questions the universalised idealisms of children's rights and notions of place in a globalised world.