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The Sociology of Early Childhood

The Sociology of Early Childhood
Critical Perspectives

First Edition

June 2017 | 192 pages | SAGE Publications Ltd
The Sociology of Early Childhood is a theoretically and historically grounded examination of young children’s experiences in contemporary society.

Arguing that a sociology of early childhood must bring together and integrate different disciplines, this book:
  • Synthesizes different sociological perspectives on childhood as well as incorporating multi-disciplinary research findings on the lives of young children
  • Explains key theoretical concepts in early childhood studies such as investment, early intervention, professional power and discourse
  • Examines the importance of play, memory and place
  • Evaluates long term parenting trends
  • Uses illustrative examples and case studies, discussion questions and annotated further reading to engage and stimulate readers
Invigorating and thought provoking, this is an invaluable read for advanced undergraduates and postgraduate students looking for a more nuanced and progressive understanding of childhood. 

Historical and Sociological Approaches on Childhood
A Relational Sociology of Early Childhood
Growing Up Beside You – Social Habitus in Early Childhood
Young Children’s Play - Challenging the Adult Establishment
Civilising young children – long-term parenting trends
New Media Technologies and the Sexualisation of Childhood

This book is a valuable addition to Early Childhood Studies, it  plays an important part in developing our  students' sociological perspectives on childhood; an important component of this multi-disciplinary degree.

Ruby Oates
University of Derby

A very welcome addition to the Childhood Studies literature, The Sociology of Early Childhood covers the key issues and subject areas essential for developing a critical and comprehensive knowledge of the field. Thoughtfully structured and clearly written, Gabriel provides a compelling discussion of ideas and concepts in ways accessible to an undergraduate audience. This is a 'must-have' text for all interested in understanding modern childhoods.

Mary Jane Kehily
The Open University

In this book, Norman Gabriel provides an insightful, relational approach to the study of early childhood. Gabriel is both original and scholarly in the way he illuminates his points. Students of early childhood should read this book for a fuller understanding of the importance of early childhood to our contemporary society.

Caroline Bath
Liverpool John Moores University

In this concise new volume, based on a strong philosophical and historical structure and supported by examples from contemporary research, Norman Gabriel constructs a framework for understanding the social worlds and experiences of children in early childhood.

Noah Kenneally
Ryerson University’s School of Early Childhood Studies

There are a number of important themes in this book which helps the reader understand contemporary childhood and how children are seen in society in the contexts of the family, education and how they spend their leisure time.

Mrs Emma Harvey
Education, Suffolk New College
January 6, 2023

This text provides interesting and insightful sociological perspectives on childhood. A nice introductory text for any students embarking on theoretical underpinnings for the first time, including investment, power and discourse, habitus, and early intervention. A thought-provoking read.

Dr Marguerita Magennis
Early Years, Portobello College
September 30, 2021

An interesting thought provoking books which encourages students to question and debate across the spectrum of sociology

Education, South Essex College - Southend
February 11, 2021

Beautiful textbook that engages the students in a journey to understand young children and their development. This text offers students access to many hidden aspects of the young child's world. We have used this text as a springboard during cooperative learning sessions and students have taken this text into practice. Very accessible and supports students of all abilities.

Dr Chelle Davison
Early Childhood & Teacher Education, Coventry University
November 28, 2017

Well explained and laid out

Sarah Holmes
Childhood & Youth Studies, Liverpool Hope University
January 15, 2018

This text is a useful addition to students' reading on the sociological perspectives of childhood. It brings together a number of contemporary themes and issues. The individual reference lists at the end of each chapter are particularly helpful in supporting students' further study.

Mrs Mary-Louise Maynes
Department of Education Studies, Bishop Grosseteste University
June 15, 2017

Sample Materials & Chapters

The Sociology of Early Childhood - Chapter 1

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