Conceptualising childhood as a relational status: parenting adult children in sixteenth-century England

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Abstract

This article explores the status of child as a relational one, defined by the power dynamics between parents and children rather than the young age of the individual. This approach complicates historiographical perspectives on the transition between childhood and adulthood, usually defined by historians as independence from parental regulation. Analysis of family correspondence from early modern England is used as a case study to explore conflicting patriarchal ideals that encouraged individuals to become independent householders, but also venerated filial obedience. It shows the broader application of this research to historians considering age as a category of analysis.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)309-330
Number of pages22
JournalContinuity and Change: A Journal of Social Structure, Law and Demography in Past Societies
Volume36
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2021

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