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When the first edition of this seminal work appeared in 1990, the sociology of childhood was only just beginning to emerge as a distinct sub-discipline. Drawing together strands of existing sociological writing about childhood and shaping them into a new paradigm, the original edition of this Routledge Classic offered a potent blend of ideas that informed, even inspired, many empirical studies of children's lives because it provided a unique lens through which to think about childhood. Featuring a collection of articles which summarised the developments in the study of childhood across the social sciences, including history, psychology, sociology, anthropology, feminist and developmental studies, scholars and professionals from developed and developing countries world-wide shared their knowledge of having worked and of working with children. Now with a new introduction from the editors to contextualise it into the 21st century, this truly ground-breaking text which helped establish childhood studies as a distinctive field of enquiry is being republished.