Children In Society Essay

816 words - 4 pages

‘’Applying material from Item A and your knowledge evaluate sociological explanations of the changes in the status of childhood.’’(20 marks) 

Sociologists believe that childhood is created and defined by society. They also believe that it is a social construct in developing society and how it plays its part. Previously in different periods there wasn’t a consistent difference between adults and children. However, now there is with clear differences and distinctions between the two. 

Childhood found its place in society after the pre-industrial society with families living in an extended environment. With extended families a lot of members it doesn’t create the difference between ...view middle of the document...


Some of Aries theories were supported by another sociologist, Edward Shorter (1975) who argued that high infant mortality rates encouraged indifference and neglect towards children in the Middle Ages. However, even though childhood was nonexistent in pre-industrial times today it has found its distinct place in society. Some sociologists argue that childhood is now disappearing. Postman states ''childhood is a social artifact, not a biological category.'' This meaning that dependent on social structure for the child and its primary socialasation will depend on its place in society. On the other hand, with that being the rise in childhood a concept to it disappearing could be the example in the 1950s. As well as children being part of the literature society with more books aimed at them (putting that divide in society), television came along and made information available to everyone. This was important to the fact in society now “adult secrets” where public. With this new information adapting itself into society it decreased the line between childhood and adulthood because children were having new ‘adult-like’ concepts in their heads. There is a sharp divide between childhood and adulthood however sociologists now feel it is disappearing.  

Some sociologists point out that childhood varies massively across different cultures. Lowell Holmes (1974) studied a Samoan village and found that children were never seen as 'too young' to do a certain task. Culturally as well they wouldn’t feel objected for their children to do manual tasks at a...

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