By David M Rosen
Once we pay attention the time period “child soldiers,” so much american citizens think blameless sufferers roped into bloody conflicts in far-off war-torn lands like Sudan and Sierra Leone. but our personal background is full of examples of kids thinking about warfare—from adolescent prisoner of struggle Andrew Jackson to Civil conflict drummer boys—who have been as soon as considered as symbols of nationwide delight instead of symptoms of human degradation.
In this bold new learn, anthropologist David M. Rosen investigates why our cultural notion of the kid soldier has replaced so substantially during the last centuries. baby squaddies within the Western mind's eye unearths how Western conceptions of formative years as a uniquely weak and blameless nation are a comparatively fresh invention. additionally, Rosen deals an illuminating background of ways human rights agencies drew upon those sentiments to create the very time period “child soldier,” which they offered because the embodiment of war’s human cost.
Filled with stunning ancient bills and facts—and revealing the explanations why one can't spell “infantry” with no “infant”—Child squaddies within the Western mind's eye seeks to shake us out of our pervasive historic amnesia. It demanding situations us to prevent taking a look at baby infantrymen via a biased set of idealized assumptions approximately adolescence, in order that we will larger deal with the realities of kids and pre-adolescents in strive against. providing informative evidence whereas reading fictional representations of the kid soldier in pop culture, this e-book is either eye-opening and thought-provoking.
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Extra resources for Child Soldiers in the Western Imagination: From Patriots to Victims
In England under the common law, there was no specific minimum age for enlistment, nor was parental consent required. 24 Militias have a long history in the common law going back to the Anglo-Saxon period. 25 A regular standing state army emerged in England only after the English Civil War, and was in many respects still modeled on its feudal antecedents. 26 The age requirements were very lax, however, and children found their way into the army through many different routes. Often children obtained officer’s commissions in regiments their fathers had either commanded or served well in.
17 Accordingly, the new law not only required specific forms of public consecration of marriage, but also inserted the condition of parental consent for all persons under age 38 C h ild S oldiers in t h e W estern I magination twenty-one. The 1753 law made clear that the new parental consent requirement was designed to protect property relations and, to the extent possible, squelch the ability of young people to form relationships that would subvert parental authority. Even with this 1753 act, English law as a whole did not draw a single hard line about age.
The modern state assumed control over many functions of family life, positioned itself as the ultimate protector of children, and assumed regulatory function over compulsory education, the regulation of child labor, T h e S truggle over C h ild R ecruitment 35 and protection of children from parental cruelty. ”8 Similar developments were taking place in Great Britain with the 1889 Act for the Prevention of Cruelty to, and Better Protection of, Children. . ”9 Despite these shifts in the law and changing attitudes toward children, the government itself rarely directly intervened in the protection of children.