Desubjugating Childhoods by Listening to the Child’s Voice and Childhoods at Play Kirsi Pauliina Kallio
AbstractThe article discusses the childhood discourse that is based on the United Nations’ Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) and particularly on the principle of hearing the child’s voice which is firmly embedded in it. Two major issues are addressed. First, it is shown how children’s counter-knowledges that do not endorse, follow or conform to the ‘UNCRC childhood’ are typically disqualified as the child’s voice. Second, it is argued that participatory processes that are often introduced as a means for hearing children’s voices effectively may also mask, bury or silence some children’s understandings and experiences. On these grounds, insights are discussed with the aim of developing a less participatory approach to bring children’s voices to the fore. Foucault’s conception of desubjugated knowledges is introduced as a starting point for recognising and qualifying situated knowledges in childhood.
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