The present study aims at contemplating the different perspectives which are prevalent in the field of Childhood Studies, namely- Developmental Perspective, Socio-cultural or contextual perspective and the perspective of Discursive Psychology. The existing trends in the research in the discourse of Childhood Studies are also discussed. One of the biggest critiques of the studies conducted in the field of childhood is that these are largely adult centric in nature and the lived experiences of children are valued the way they have been understood by adults. It implies that the discourse of childhood studies is largely colored by the lens of the adults. In this process the actual positionality of children in various aspects of development are left unaddressed. This work tries to study children’s experiences from their own perspective and therefore, the focus of the work is to elaborate upon the idea of childhood the way it is being perceived by children themselves. In order to elaborate this, while situating the study in phenomenological perspective, experiences of the children have been studied in detail to explore their perspectives of being a child. The study is qualitative in nature and located in interpretivist paradigm. Coding has been used to identify and finalize the themes of analysis. The themes for understanding childhood from children’s perspective have been brought out with the help of coding based on the interaction with children through semi-structured interviews and literature review. These themes of analysis represent the various constituents of the childhood as shared by children. Various themes elaborate the ideas shared by children separately but these are not exclusive from each other, rather cross-sectionality can be witnessed in their basic explanation.
Sandeep Kumar, University of Delhi, India