Children’s geographies and the 'new wave' of childhood studies

Peter Kraftl, John Horton, S Spyrou (Editor), R Rosen (Editor), D Cook (Editor)

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportChapter


This chapter offers a critical engagement with a so-called ‘new wave’ of childhood studies. It begins by critically reviewing recent approaches to studying childhood that have been inspired by Actor-Network, new materialist and posthumanist philosophies. In doing so, we argue for greater attention to, and interdisciplinary collaboration with, research in children’s geographies, which has sought to attend to the nonrepresentational elements of children’s lives. The chapter then argues for a re-thinking of the relationship between the biological and the social (‘biosocial dualism’), in particular in how children maybe decentred recentred in social-scientific analyses. Finally, we outline how childhood studies scholars might further develop new wave approaches, via the key theme of construction and the empirical example of large, nationwide programmes of school-building. Writing as geographers, we weave arguments about space, place, scale and spatiality throughout the chapter.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationReimagining Childhood Studies
Place of PublicationLondon
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 23 Jan 2018



  • Space
  • affect
  • architecture
  • construction
  • education
  • materiality
  • new materialism and posthumanism
  • place
  • scale
  • schools

Cite this

Kraftl, P., Horton, J., Spyrou, S. (Ed.), Rosen, R. (Ed.), & Cook, D. (Ed.) (Accepted/In press). Children’s geographies and the 'new wave' of childhood studies. In Reimagining Childhood Studies Bloomsbury.