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Alef Is for AllahChildhood, Emotion, and Visual Culture in Islamic Societies$
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Jamal J. Elias

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780520290075

Published to California Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520290075.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 17 September 2019

Bringing Up Baby

Bringing Up Baby

The Construction of Childhood

Chapter:
(p.61) Chapter 3 Bringing Up Baby
Source:
Alef Is for Allah
Author(s):

Jamal J. Elias

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520290075.003.0003

This chapter focuses on the construction of childhood as the adult defined, historically and culturally constructed state of being a child, as distinct from the experiences, biology, and psychology of children. It explores the emergence of the modern concept of idealized childhood and juxtaposes it to anti-childhood, which is an equally idealized concept of a child in absolute want. Aylan Kurdi, the Syrian boy whose drowned body washed up on a Turkish beach and became a viral image, serves as a case study for the dichotomy between idealized childhood and anti-childhood. The social implications of notions of childhood are explored with reference to social debates over child soldiers and the legal age for marriage.

Keywords:   childhood, child psychology, anti-childhood, Aylan Kurdi, child soldiers, legal age for marriage

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