What is it like to be a child growing up in Britain these days? Is it a happy time, or is there too much to worry about? What are the best and worst aspects of being a child today? Children these days draws on the accounts of over two thousand children, and five hundred adults, to examine the present day meaning of childhood and its implications for policy and practice.
Key questions addressed by the study include how is childhood perceived? What is it like to grow up and become an adult? What are the influences and controls on young people? Are young people protected or over-protected? How much do young people and adults respect and talk to each other? To what extent is Britain a child-friendly society?
The book provides unique evidence on children's and adults' views of childhood, and draws conclusions on the attitudes and policies to be challenged and developed in the 21st century. It will make a significant contribution to contemporary debate and discussion on the future of childhood.
Children these days is essential reading for policy makers, practitioners, academics, researchers, and students on childhood studies, social sciences, and social policy courses. It has been written in a style that means it is also accessible to others with a more general interest in children and childhood.
"... touches on important contemporary discussions." Community Care
"Children these days highlights a series of important life-stage and life-cycle tensions - the desire of children and young people to remain young whilst being taken seriously and respected, and the importance of improving intergenerational relationships." Social Policy
"The book provides evidence of children's and adults' views of childhood, and draws conclusions regarding the attitudes and policies to be challenged and devloped in the 21st centuary." Journal of Consumer Policy
"Overall, the book provides a useful synopsis of recent literature in many different aspects of childhood. As a resource for those wishing to understand the motivations of children, what interests, upsets and frustrates them, this book provides some helpful information." The Psychologist
"Nicola Madge has done a great service to childhood studies in the UK through this fascinating snapshot of children's lives, experiences and views. Discussing many important issues, and illuminating them with valuable evidence drawn from a large sample of children, it should be a standard reference for future debate." Alan Prout, Institute of Education, University of Warwick
Nicola Madge is Assistant Research Director at the National Children's Bureau, London. She has wide experience of research with children and young people, and has published many books and articles based on her work.
Perceptions of childhood; Collecting the evidence; What's it like being a child; Growing up, becoming 'adult'; Influences, controls, and protection; Status and respect; Getting along together; A child-friendly society?; Making things better for children and adults; Findings and messages.