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Childhood In Literature Discuss With Reference To Either One Object Type, Or A Group Of Objects That Constitute The Material Culture Of Children

2183 words - 9 pages

There seems to be a fundamental epistemological difference between how we regard modern children and how we understand children in the past(Derevenski, JS, 2000)Discuss with reference to either one object type, or a group of objects that constitute the material culture of children.Conspicuous by their presence (or relative absence), and originating from hand as well as industrialised production, furniture and artefacts for children communicate messages about adults' attitudes towards the child's physical and psychological development; intimacy and order in the family, control, autonomy and personal territory, learning, and above all, the role of play.In order to try to make sense of adults' material provision for children, it is important to be aware that childhood is socially constructed.The author Will Self has described the 1990s as having seen unparalleled commodification of the baby, a phenomenon requiring the acquisition of fashionable accessories, largely clothes that are scaled-down versions of adults.The fixed, static impression of the child as a miniature adult, endowed naturally with naive innocence, is part of the inheritance of the 16th and 17th centuries, involving beliefs in the absolute goodness of childhood,and the 19th century Victorian romanticization of children.The introduction of anthropomorphised animal elements in design for children, wich became common at the end of the 19th century, served to reinforce adults' attribution of qualities of innocence and virtue to childhood, and to differentiate children's needs from those of adults at a time before psychoanalytical ideas about the nature of childhood began to make an impact. The purpose of life in childhood is not to grow up, but to play, something adults are prone to envy.By the early twentieth century, rooms and furnishing has distinguished numerous stages in a child's tastes and activities, from the nursery, to adolescence to indipendence. The nursery was and is a repository of beliefs. Even if it become a zone totally free of adults.Living with good design is incopatible with living with children, good design is invariably static, ordered and of value, and children need to move through and disorder their environments, each time as if afresh, in line with their constant state of development.Children use objects in the world around them as symbols to express feelings and thoughts which otherwise would be unacceptable both to themselves and to the group in which their are living.For the time up 1800 doesn't exsist the real childhood. In the old system of a patriarchally ordered family structure, children had no place of their own, there is nothing indicating any particular affection, or any idea of a child's world in later sense.Children grow into the adult world with beatings, and their furniture is designed with their physical protection in mind, not to facilitate the blossoming of their potential.Children were enlisted to help out and run errands, and gradually grew...

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