Child Labor

Mary Lorena Kenny

in Childhood Studies

ISBN: 9780199791231
Published online March 2012 | | DOI:
Child Labor


Approaches to research on child labor, and the development of appropriate action to combat it, have shifted in the past few decades. Children’s labor was previously considered “natural” as an inherent aspect of being poor, and rarely were their voices included in collection of data. Today, both quantitative and qualitative studies include first-person accounts to bolster their analysis. The umbrella term, “child labor,” has been disaggregated to order to highlight how context—gender, race, sexuality, urbanization and global shifts in labor and consumption, natural disasters—shape the nature, extent, interpretation, and representation of children’s work. Together with scholarship historicizing “childhood,” the family and household, and the ongoing efforts by nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), a rich source of information is available to help navigate the complexity of children’s work and the significance it has for children, their families, and the world.

Article.  9028 words. 

Subjects: Development Studies

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