The Child as Citizen
- Felton J. Earls - Harvard University, USA
Sociology of Childhood
Marking the 20th anniversary of the United Nations General Assembly's adoption of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), this volume of the ANNALS considers conceptual, legal, and practical issues related to the realization of children as citizens. The treatment of children is of vital interest to all who seek stronger democracy, especially in aging societies that will necessarily become increasingly dependent on the young. At what age should children be allowed to vote? How are demographic changes taking place in American society relevant to advancing the rights platform for children? What lessons are there to learn from societies that have secured a legal framework for children's rights, such as in Brazil? How are democracy and citizenship strengthened by extending citizenship to children? Using the CRC as a starting point on the path of achieving functional citizenship for children, the distinguished contributors provide examples of empirical research on children's participation in social and political matters and offer recommendations for conceiving child citizenship in a multigenerational context in which the voice, opinions, and energies of children are included and integrated into society at large.