Publisher: Vernon Press

Initiators/Editors: 

  1. Prof. Charles Quist-Adade, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Surrey, BC, Canada
  2. Prof. De-Valera Botchway, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana.
  3. Dr. Awo Abena Amoa Sarpong, University of Cape Coast, Cape Coast, Ghana.

For this edited volume, we hope to have a coherent congregation of chapters presenting original research that focuses on the psychology, sociology and history of the condition of childhood in Africa. We intend to move away from the traditional examination of the child solely, to the exploration of childhood in Africa. We are also interested in the different rationalisations and conceptions of childhood, a diversity of aspects and ramifications of childhoods, from purely African and Africa centred perspectives.

The enquiry into aspects of childhood, such as childhood belongings, and the cultures of childhood, has been most amplified in countries in the Global North of Europe and North America in recent times. Africa has a large youth population and children make up a significant percentage of that demography. Yet the study about childhoods in Africa is still in its nascency. Worse, the scholarly studies of the life of children in Africa have mostly looked at children as victims of social injustice and exploitation and persons living on the peripheries of the world of adults. But there are more regions, surprisingly happy and hope-giving ones, worth interrogating. These include creative expression in childhood, perceptions of happiness in childhood, childhood versus adultism, childhood spirituality, hijacked childhoods and brave negotiations of safe havens for self-expression, and child(ren) constructed understandings of the African childhood.

The edited volume will bring together the composite analyses and interpretations and stories and case studies about various aspects of childhood in Africa by scholars who focus on African society, culture, education and history. It will investigate childhood and the child(ren) actor(s) across different stages of personhood development, and times and spaces on the African continent.

The editors encourage contributors to submit works that are more inclined to the sociological and historical approaches of inquiry and analysis.The editors also seek works that approach the subject of childhoods in Africa from the interdisciplinary perspective.  Thus, contributors can come from different areas such as Childhood Studies, Psychology, Education, Sociology, Human Relations, Cultural Studies, African History, African/a Studies, Postcolonial Studies, Philosophy, Humanitarian and Social Work.

It is envisaged that contributions for the chapters will be drawn from studies that look at broad subthemes that concern different aspects of childhood in Africa. The broad subthemes and areas, which the editors are interested in include, but are not limited to,

  • Childhood in Africa: the Experience of Birth and Coming to a Family
  • Childhood in Africa: The Body Experience in Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Childhoods constructed around given Names/ Childhoods of Unnamed Children
  • Childhood in Africa: Languages and Cultures Mediating Belonging in Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Learning Responsibility and Service
  • Childhood in Africa: The Creative Negotiation of Harmonious Co-Existence of Divergent Beliefs of the Individual Child and Convergent Group Beliefs
  • Childhood in Africa: Play, Play Worlds and Social Learning
  • Childhood in Africa: Childhoods Marked and Unmarked by Ritual and Rites of Passage
  • Childhood in Africa: Eccentric, Ill-adjusted, Misfit and Evil Childhoods
  • Childhood in Africa: The Disabled and Vulnerable Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: The Schooling Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Coming of Age, Sexual Identification and Confrontations with Sex
  • Childhood in Africa: Digital Technologies and Conceptions of Self and Community in the African Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Health and Wellness in Spirit, Mind, Soul and Body
  • Childhood in Africa: Identity-building in Multi-cultural and Multi-national Contexts of Living, Moving and Surviving
  • Childhood in Africa: Gangs, Secret Societies, and Forbidden Associations
  • Childhood in Africa: The modern dilemma of being a Child and a Parent
  • Childhood in Africa: Dealing with Social Isolation
  • Childhood in Africa: The Creative and Artistic Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Food, Nutrition and Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Rural and Urban Working Childhoods
  • Childhood in Africa: Mass Media and Self-Identification in Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Children’s Notions of Childhood
  • Childhood in Africa: Hijacked Childhoods and Confrontations with Adultism
  • Childhood in Africa: Sports and Games-shaped Childhoods
  • Studies of diverse notions and theories of childhood across Africa

Important Dates:

  • Submission of abstracts and drafts: March to 15th May 2017.
  • Review of abstracts and papers: 15th May to 1st July 2017
  • Editing and submission of First Draft: 1st July to 20th August 2017
  • Submission of Final Draft: 20th August to 30th September 2017
  • Papers go to the publisher:  3rd October 2017
  • Publication: November 2017

Only works which have not been published before will be considered. Each abstract will be reviewed by the editors, and the papers will go through a full peer review procedure. Submitted papers should be in Word, and saved as .DOC or .DOCX files. They should use footnotes and follow the Chicago or Harvard Styles of referencing. Use UK English spellings and punctuation except when quoting from a source that has used another English style. Provide translations (your own, or the standard, if there is a printed translation available) of all material in languages other than English. The translations should be incorporated into the text, following the foreign term or foreign selection.

Please submit a 400 word abstract, and your manuscript which should be between 7000 to 8000 words, and a 300-400 word academic biography including your qualifications, area(s) of research interest and relevant recent publications as an email attachment with “Childhoods in Africa Book” in the subject line to the editors:

Please direct requests for any additional information to the editors via the email addresses provided above.


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