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Palgrave Studies on the Anthropology of Childhood and Youth
cover

The Ecology of Playful Childhood

The Diversity and Resilience of Caregiver-Child Interactions among the San of Southern Africa

Authors: Takada, Akira

  • Presents an important contribution to existing scholarship given the relatively few recent studies in the area
  • Will serve as a valuable resource for scholars and students across disciplines including anthropology, developmental psychology, human evolution, and cultural studies
  • Holds wider relevance and value in that that the hunter-gatherer lifestyle has implications for the human condition generally
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eBook $79.99
price for USA (gross)
  • The eBook version of this title will be available soon
  • Due: October 1, 2020
  • ISBN 978-3-030-49439-1
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Hardcover $99.99
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  • Customers within the U.S. and Canada please contact Customer Service at +1-800-777-4643, Latin America please contact us at +1-212-460-1500 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). Pre-ordered printed titles are excluded from promotions.
  • Due: September 3, 2020
  • ISBN 978-3-030-49438-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Immediate ebook access, if available*, with your print order
About this book

While studies of San children have attained the peculiar status of having delineated the prototype for hunter-gatherer childhood, relatively few serious ethnographic studies of San children have been conducted since an initial flurry of research in the 1960s and 1970s. Based on the author’s long-term field research among several San groups of Southern Africa, this book reconsiders hunter-gatherer childhood using “play” as a key concept. Playfulness pervades the intricate practices of caregiver-child interactions among the San: immediately after birth, mothers have extremely close contact with their babies. In addition to the mother’s attentions, other people around the babies actively facilitate gymnastic behavior to soothe them. These distinctive caregiving behaviors indicate a loving, indulgent attitude towards infants. This also holds true for several language genres of the San that are used in early vocal communication. Children gradually become involved in various playful activities in groups of children of multiple ages, which is the major locus of their attachment after weaning; these playful activities show important similarities to the household and subsistence activities carried out by adults. Rejuvenating studies of San children and hunter-gatherer childhood and childrearing practices, this book aims to examine these issues in detail, ultimately providing a new perspective for the understanding of human sociality.

About the authors

Akira Takada is currently an associate professor at the Graduate School of Asian and African Area Studies (ASAFAS) at Kyoto University, Japan.

Buy this book

eBook $79.99
price for USA (gross)
  • The eBook version of this title will be available soon
  • Due: October 1, 2020
  • ISBN 978-3-030-49439-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format:
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
Hardcover $99.99
price for USA
  • Customers within the U.S. and Canada please contact Customer Service at +1-800-777-4643, Latin America please contact us at +1-212-460-1500 (24 hours a day, 7 days a week). Pre-ordered printed titles are excluded from promotions.
  • Due: September 3, 2020
  • ISBN 978-3-030-49438-4
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Immediate ebook access, if available*, with your print order

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
The Ecology of Playful Childhood
Book Subtitle
The Diversity and Resilience of Caregiver-Child Interactions among the San of Southern Africa
Authors
Series Title
Palgrave Studies on the Anthropology of Childhood and Youth
Copyright
2020
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-49439-1
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-49439-1
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-49438-4
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XXI, 244
Number of Illustrations
8 b/w illustrations, 13 illustrations in colour
Topics

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