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J. Marshall Beier

The Militarization of Childhood

Thinking Beyond the Global South
2014. xii, 297 S. 216 mm
ISBN: 1-13-741530-4 (1137415304)
Neue ISBN: 978-1-13-741530-1 (9781137415301)

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In its various manifestations, the campaign to end child soldiering has brought graphic images of militarized children to popular consciousness. In the main, this has been a campaign that has seemed to speak to African contexts without as much reflection on the myriad ways in which the lives of children are militarized in advanced (post)industrial societies. Proceeding from this quite striking omission, the contributors to this volume move beyond the usual focus on the global South. Making what will be an important contribution to a much needed critical turn in the vast and still rapidly growing child soldier literature, they address multifarious ways in which childhood is militarized beyond the global South through enactments of militarism that have drawn much less in the way of critical inquiry.
(Neo) Zones of Violence: Reconstructing Children into Militants and Insurgents and Empire; A.M.Agathangelou & K.D.Killian ´Guardians of the Peace´?: The Significance of Children to Continued Militarism; A.M.S.Watson Militarized Children and Bare Childhood; L.Macmillan Education and the War on Terror: The Early Years; H.Brocklehurst War Stories: Militarized Pedagogies of Everyday Parenting; J.Marshall Beier Superheroes or Supersoldiers? Are Caped Crusaders the New Face of the Military?; L.A.Crowe Outsmarting the Weapons: The World of ´Us´ Against ´Them´; C.T.Sjolander Where the Wild Things Are: Imaginative Disembodiment and the Militarization of Childhood; L.Copeland Sometimes It´s Good to be Bad: Young People and Symbolic Experimentation with the ´Darkside´ in On and Off-line Role Playing Games; N.Crowe Kids with Guns: Militarization, Masculinities, Moral Panic and (Dis)Organised Violence; V.M.Basham Childhood Militarization and Race Relations: The Case of Omar Khadr and the Canadian State; J.E.Foran Peace Through Superior Firepower: Reflections on a Militarized Childhood; H.A.Smith , M.Smith & R.Smith
The Militarization of Childhood . . . is insightful and covers ground that one would not normally find in the same collection, such as critiques of international law and child development approaches to parenting, analyses of children´s literature, and indepth examinations of internet games and media. In spite of this breadth of coverage, the book is well integrated and quite accessible. Because of its scope, scholars from various fields will no doubt find it highly valuable. This collection is also remarkably timely, particularly given current discussions about gun control in the United States. I recommend it strongly as it invites reflection on the linkages of many factors that come together in visible and less-visible forms of violence in society today. Contemporary Sociology

"Reading The Militarization of Childhood prompts all of us to explore and critique the subtle ways that girls and boys are being militarized - in classrooms, video game shops, and the corridors of the UN. This is a valuable book for anyone trying to make sense of everyday politics." - Cynthia Enloe, author of Nimo´s War, Emma´s War: Making Feminist Sense of the Iraq War