1st Edition

Children in Social Movements Rethinking Agency, Mobilization and Rights

By Diane Rodgers Copyright 2020
    184 Pages 10 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    182 Pages 10 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    Children’s participation in social movements is presented through a theoretical typology consisting of strategic participants, participants by default and active participants. This range of participation accounts for the social location of children historically and internationally, calling for their inclusion into social movement research.

    Children are unresearched and untheorized participants within social movement literature. Providing rich detail of children’s participation through illustrative case studies, this book presents the ideal types of participation as grounded in their social movement activity. These cross cultural, historical and contemporary case studies include, whenever possible, children’s perspective in their own words. Utilizing insights from childhood studies on agency and rights of children enhances the understanding of social movement strategies and mobilization. Following the chapters on each type of participation, suggestions are provided for rethinking existing social movement theories to acknowledge child participants.

    Scholars and students of social movements and childhood studies, as well as within the field of sociology will find interest in the wide range of case studies presented of children in social movements. The discussion of how social movement theory might be applied to the types of participation is meant to inspire future research and expand analysis of children’s participation in social movements.


    1. Changing Views on Children and Sociopolitical Participation

    2. Children as Strategic Participants

    3. Children as Participants by Default

    4. Children as Active Participants

    5. Children’s Participation and Social Movement Theory

    6. Conclusion



    Diane M. Rodgers is an Associate Professor at Northern Illinois University and author of Debugging the Link between Social Theory and Social Insects. Social movements, theory and science studies publications appear in The Sociological Quarterly, Sociological Spectrum, Humanity and Society, Sociological Inquiry, and Organization.