Studies of childhoods in the Global South: towards an epistemic turn in transnational childhood research?

Afua Twum-Danso Imoh, Lucia Rabello de Castro, Orna Naftali

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The most well-known and widely cited literature in the multidisciplinary field of childhood studies has been undertaken by scholars based in the Global North, who have produced theoretical frameworks and conceptualisations about childhood frequently deployed by Northern and Southern scholars alike. These are often based on priorities developed in Northern academic institutions, sometimes in response to funding calls by grant-making agencies also based in the North. As a result, when Southern scholars contribute to the dominant childhood studies literature, a field of study in which the majority of well-known articles tend to be published in Northern-based Anglophone journals, their contributions stand mainly as empirical variations of mainstream Northern theories whose scholarship foregrounds theoretical and methodological frameworks designed with particular childhoods in mind. The resulting outcome is that Global South childhoods – in their plurality and diversity – do not contribute epistemically to the construction of a transnational childhood scientific discourse. This ultimately limits the quality of global childhood studies and hinders the development of more conceptually sophisticated, eventually divergent, theoretical frameworks that can account for multiplicity and diversity in childhoods. Therefore, this volume sought to explore locally driven perspectives of childhoods in diverse contexts in the South for the purpose of gaining insights into the knowledge that can be produced about Southern childhoods when research is driven by priorities, demands, and needs of locales in the Global South.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-16
Number of pages16
JournalThird World Thematics: A TWQ Journal
Issue number1-3
StatePublished - 4 May 2022


Dive into the research topics of 'Studies of childhoods in the Global South: towards an epistemic turn in transnational childhood research?'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this