Sticks, stones, pebbles and petals: ‘childhooding’ in the Posthuman lens

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With the Posthuman critique of the notion of ‘child’ as a sign for a bodily object bounded by space and time (Murris and Borcherds 2019), this paper troubles contemporary discourses of ‘childhood’ as a fixed age-related entity with inferiority, immaturity to ‘adulthood’ and proposes alternative thinking ‘childhooding’ for reconfiguration of ‘childhood’ across cultural contexts in the 21st century. ‘Childhooding’ signifies the entanglements, relationalities, intra-actions and diffractions infused in the Posthuman and ‘childhooding’ connects the ‘ecology of intimacy’ nurturing freedom, relationships, reciprocity, respect and sympathy (Simpson 2016). This paper opens up dialogues for early childhood educators and researchers to reflect on the importance of ‘childhooding’ as continuum in developing young children’s awareness and sympathy towards the wide world by re-energising early childhood heritage, the ultimate importance of young children’s engagement with nature through play (Froebel 1887).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationSticks, stones, pebbles and petals: ‘childhooding’ in the Posthuman lens
Publication statusUnpublished - 27 Jan 2023


  • childhooding, the Posthuman, discourses of childhood, material agency, thing power, the Anthropocene, child-centred pedagogy

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