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Lecture 9

CHYS 2P38 Lecture Notes - Lecture 9: Voting Age, Soweto Uprising, Kaski District

Child and Youth Studies
Course Code
Tom O' Neill

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Chys 2p38 March 10th, 2013 - LECTURE 9
Protecting children and youth from politics
Generational consciousness
Schools and colleges as a focus for political mobilization
The panic over “political engagement”
Video: Please Vote for Me
Children are conceived as belonging to the domestic sphere (and to schools), and thus not political.
that they shouldn't vote or be active and participate. For most of history children have been very
What do we mean by “political”?:
Formal political institutions exclude children (elections, parliaments, parties etc.), but attempt to
mobilize youth for their own ends. as agents as a political costs.
CRC (12.1) specifies for children’s right to be heard, but “politics” implies that what they say ought to
influence the world they live in. Politics is having the ability to shape social events. ex- things like health
care concern children so why are we excluding their voice. many politicians are aimed towards older
people because they vote
almost everything we do is political, even if it is not structured.
if children were allowed to vote would things look differently? probably
Children may be excluded from formal politics, but they have consistently shown an ability to be
political. it is an ability that should be nurtured
In April, 2013, students at Bal Mandir school in Kaski, Nepal, protested physical abuse to education
ministry; principal and teachers were fired. Abuse a very common thing n Nepal because there is no
one to complain to. These children took these claims to minister of education ( grade 7 students) they
were pressing for change, to move them to another school. Minister of education at first did nothing
they didn't accept it, eventually student union joined in protest to make a change than change came.
Children have played the role of “vanguard”( leading edge of political/social change) in numerous
political movements; China, South Africa and Palestine. It is young people who take the street to
protest, and eventually adults fall in behind them to support them
Generational change
Karl Mannheim – historical events produces shared “generational consciousness” in young people.
people are born into generation is a simple motor of change. Fresh contact have ability to transform
and change. in some generations there are historical events that people in the generation have to
respond to ex-1960 Vietnam war young people were responding,
May act as a “generational unit” in political action. some generations have a unity, combine a
consciousness and agree on actions that need to be taken. As a group know they have to act politically
Generational cleavages may be a factor (Comaroff and Comaroff for Africa). clinging to power to where
decisions are made and resources are found
New generations, however, may make a “conservative turn” and restore former moral order. many think
generation change will be progressive and that isn't always the case, many young generations are
more conservative than their parents.
Political conflict can lead to higher rates of child and youth involvement
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