What is a discourse? Explain two rivalling discourses of childhood and suggest many ways that they can have an impact on children’s lives.
The concept of discourse is key to understanding a social constructionist method of childhood. A discourse can be an independent set of interrelated suggestions held with a particular ideology or worldview. The social constructionist approach tries to explain the different ways knowledge of kids and early years are created.
Different discourses of child years have different concepts of the child years which has different implications on how in which youngsters are treated.
Inside the social constructionist theory you will find 3 key discourses ” romantic, puritan and tabula rasa. This essay can look at 2 of those discourses, which straight compete with each other ” the Romantic and Puritan, and suggest ways that they effect children’s lives.
The romantic discourse of childhood suggests children are obviously good. InRousseau’s (1979) watch childhood and innocence go hand in hand ” children are created pure and innocent.
He thought children must be given independence to be who they actually are, that all their childhood ought to be carefree, and that their purity should be protected. Rousseau presumed children just learn bad and misbehave because they have been mistreated or corrupted in some manner.
This is contrary to the Puritan task, which believes children are born wicked, will be amoral, without conscience, of course, if left for their own equipment will use savagery. In accordance to Hobbes (1588-1679), who have supports this discourse, children should be controlled and regimented by adults ” even if it triggers the child unhappiness, short-term soreness or distress. Unlike the prior discourse, the Puritan task sees children as being accountable for their activities.
These discourses of childhood are seen created in the press. The Peugeot television ad (Video you Band 3, page no’s 239 ” 256)gives a good example of a man driving a car fanaticising regarding being a leading man andsaving the little girl pictured from staying run over. The advert attempts to construct the thatthe Peugeot is the sort of car which will appeal to a “hero and one who is known as a ‘protector. ‘ The offer is constructed in such a way to encourage the viewer to create an image of the innocent, prone child and also to treat children as people needing safeguard. (the guy is the main character protecting the child from danger). It is clear that this offer reflects the Romantic discourse.
One even more advert created around the intimate discourse is the Evian normal water advert (Video 1 Group 3, video page no’s 256 ” 257 & 266 ” 268) featuring babies going swimming in normal water. From this the viewer is meant to construct an image of the baby as being pure, and unspoiled. This ad is designed to inspire the viewer to think of real Evian water and a ‘pure’ baby, suggesting that babies will be innocent since they are pure.
As already said the intimate and puritan discourses happen to be directly competitive.
The Puritan discourse can be seen through the subsequent 2 film clips. Thefirst is from the film “Leon (Video you Band 3, video site no’s 271 ” 297) which is a account of the camaraderie between Leon, a professional cannibal and Mathilda who is a new girl who’s parents and young close friend have been wiped out and who have asks Leon to teach her to get rid of so that the lady can avenge her family’s death. The film features constructed a picture of Mathilda as a great unruly, sinful, and incredible child which is how the puritan discourse describes children.
“Leon shows that childhood in this case is usually not a moments of innocence which bad points, like assault and loss of life are seen ” and caused ” by children. It displays a child ” as Mathilda is obviously continue to a child ” who has certainly not had her childhoodprotected.
The final film show (Video 1 Band several p 333-339) is that of “American Beauty portraying a young girl named Angela who is a buddy of Lester’s daughter’s. Angela is represented in a way that the actual viewer believe she is sexuallymature and just like Mathilda in the previous clip ” ‘knowing’ but not innocent.
This challenges the viewer’s concepts of years as a child being a moments of sexual innocence as this is a young lady oozing libido, definitely not purity ” but as a child lacking in morals, mirroring the puritan view of childhood.
Yet, in a scene where Lester thinks his fantasy of Angela is about to becoming reality, Angela shows that the lady innocent in her familiarity with sexual concerns, reminding visitors that the girl with still a child in need of protection. This film clip started as describing an nonmoral, sinful, ‘knowing’ young lady in line with the puritan task and ends by depicting children since people needing protection and who will be innocent, and since childhood being a time which will adults must be protecting the kid from something that will shatter the infant’s innocence. In a sense, the end from the clip describes the adult’s job about be the hero, keeping the child coming from ‘evil’ much the same as the person in the Peugeot advert mentioned earlier.
These kinds of discourses influence our landscapes of children which often affects how children are thought of and therefore treated. In implementing a Romantic look at, you will see children as innocence which in the 2 media clips, was associatedwith vulnerability and purity. Relating to Rousseau, children should be protected from the adult globe, and almost everything should be done for making their years as a child a happy carefree time. As already found though throughout the 2 film clips, the Puritan talk treats children as being unruly and in want of control. They are cared for as being in charge of their activities and therefore they must be punished when they do wrong.
Having shown how intimate and puritan discourses are visible contemporary the child years through the use of the media, Let me move on to look at a true lifestyle example ” that of the murder of 3-year old James Bulger in1993. This little boy was badly beaten and still left on a train line following being abducted from his mum even though on a purchasing trip. His killers had been two 10-year old young boys. (Asquith 1996)To adopt the romantic discourse of child years in dealing with the those two boys who killed Adam Bulger would be to suggest you believed the boys to become naturally very good but corrupted by adults and therefore needs to be forgiven and given therapy ” not punishment.
Alternatively, to acknowledge withthe contending discourse ” that of the puritan discoursethen you would seethose boys as being inherently nasty and responsible for their own activities and therefore suitable punishment. Therefore it is clear that whichever discourse of the child years is selected in dealing with children, it has effects on the way in which children are cared for.
So far this kind of essay has looked at the social constructionist approach to years as a child, but will today consider an additional approach ” the applied. Whenstudying the child years from a great applied procedure, the main hobbies are the result which practical issues just like the children’s parental input and expansion will have for the children’s lives. Within this procedure there are a couple of models ofhow the law can easily deal with fresh offenders, such as the boys in the James Bulger case. In respect to Asquith 1996 you will discover two versions within the appliedapproach that give diverse opinions approach deal with youthful offenders. These are linked to the discourses already mentioned inside the social constructionist approach.
The welfare style uses sociable and specific factors in explaining how come children do wrong ” it is because they’ve been mistreated or deprived in some way. This mirrors the Romantic discourse or in other words that equally see children as being innocent and blame other factors for children’s wrongdoings. It is convinced, therefore that children tend not to deserve being punished but ought to be demonstrated forgiveness and deserve being cared for in order to overcome virtually any disadvantages they have faced. In following this style, children must not be dealt with within a court of law but by means of rehab and by looking at what can be best for the kid.
The justice model is within contrast to the welfare style and perceives child offenders as being in charge of what they’ve done and deservepunishment and dealt with in a court of criminal regulation. The justicemodel mirrors the puritan discourse, as they carry similar morals thatchildren are innately bad and ought to be held responsible for own activities and ought to have to be reprimanded accordingly.
This kind of essay features looked at a couple of competing discourses of child years ” the romantic and the puritan. They are really competing in the way that they perspective children andchildhood which in turn includes a direct implication for the way that youngsters are treated. In the Romantic task, children are made as being natural, innocent and the childhood ought to be protected and kept happy-go-lucky. This talk competes with the puritan discourse which sees children to be innately wicked, unruly and lacking in moralsIt stands to reason consequently that these competing discourses will vary implications to get the way youngsters are treated. In adopting an intimate discourse kids will be forgiven for wrongs, protected by evil and offered treatment when they do offend whereas in taking on a puritan discourse kids who are “naughty do this because of their innate evilness and deserve to be punished.
Book you Understanding The child years, Chapter 1Block 1 Study Guide and Audio-Visual Notes, Unit 1Video 1 Music group 3 “Representations of Childhood
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