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Childhood and Youth in Troubled Times

Key information

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Module description

This module will focus on the experiences of children and young people living in 'troubled times'. Through consideration of case studies - for example, the lives of child soldiers or the case of unaccompanied child migrants – we will explore the ways in which adversity and crises, such as armed conflict, affect the everyday lives, education and mental and physical health of children and young people.

Normative theories of childhood, and perceptions of what children and young people 'need' during their childhood, are dominated by conceptualisations and experiences from the affluent 'West', which often fail to take into account the full range of lived experienced of children and young people from across the globe. Many children and young people are heavily affected by social and political upheaval, armed conflict, pandemics, famine and natural disasters. Their complex experiences problematise Western assumptions about childhood and raise ethical dilemmas about how to respond. Through this module we will consider how well normative theories of childhood enable us to understand the lives of children and young people. Particular attention will be paid to children and young people's vulnerability in such situations and their need of protection, as well as their agency: their ability to shape their lives and those of their communities in incredibly difficult situations.

Assessment details

  • 5 mins oral presentation (worth 15%)
  • 2,500 word essay (case study) (worth 85%)

Module description disclaimer

King’s College London reviews the modules offered on a regular basis to provide up-to-date, innovative and relevant programmes of study. Therefore, modules offered may change. We suggest you keep an eye on the course finder on our website for updates.

Please note that modules with a practical component will be capped due to educational requirements, which may mean that we cannot guarantee a place to all students who elect to study this module.

Please note that the module descriptions above are related to the current academic year and are subject to change.