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Politics and childhood: approaches from hearing children who take part in social movements of struggle for land

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Regiane Sbroion de Carvalho
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Doctoral Thesis
Press: Ribeirão Preto.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Faculdade de Filosofia, Ciências e Letras de Ribeirão Preto (PCARP/BC)
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Ana Paula Soares da Silva; Adelaide Alves Dias; Sergio Cesar da Fonseca; José Fernando Machado Menten; Urbano dos Santos Ruiz; Evaldo Antonio Lencioni Titto
Advisor: Ana Paula Soares da Silva

This thesis aims to understand the meanings on politics built by children who lives in a rural settlement linked to social movements that strugle for land - Landless Workers Movement (MST) and Landless Liberation Movement (MLST). Historically, areas having the child as an object of study have neglected the discussion of their relationship with politics and at the same time, areas that turn to research politics have been focused on adult relationships, hiding the childhood of that process. We understand that we are living a historical moment where there is an emergence, in scientific discourses and practices, of counter-hegemonic perspectives that put the child as a possible subject of political action. Based on theoretical and methodological perspectives of marxist Antonio Gramsci and Lev Vigotski, we present the thesis that children who experience spaces and relationships permeated by ties with social movements, due to the constant search for enforcing rights of these groups, have repertoires about politics, as well as an active relationship with this field, with criticism of their reality and with the modification of relationships and contexts. For this, we conducted an empirical survey of 32 children aged six to twelve years, 17 from MLST and 15 from MST. To build the empirical corpus we used as instruments: focus groups and individual conversations. All instruments were recorded and transcribed in full. The analysis was made from exhaustive readings of the empirical material, having two axes: (1) policy meanings presented by children; (2) the policy in the daily lives of children, in which we evaluate, from the reports of their lives, how power relations are established. The meanings are often related to institutional policy, considered as a specific field of relations between rulers and ruled, the main ones being: vote, political figures, orders to be followed. We still found meanings related to media, documents, care and improvement of contexts. For the young children, they mention not knowing what politics are. Regarding the daily politics materialized in the relationships experienced by the children, we find situations in which power is exercised mainly by adults. In relationships of confrontation, we find situations in which power is centralized in the child. Finally, we also find situations focused on dialogue, in which power is negotiated and is materialized from the existing conditions in every interaction. Considering the complexity and contradiction peculiar to human relationships, we find fields that approximate to the presented thesis, as the meaning of politics as improvement of the contexts experienced by the children, which brings a characteristic of subjects action on the reality and also situations meant as politics in which the actor who performs the action is the child. However, we found a predominance of power situations focused on adults and a significance of the category \"childhood\" as apolitical when asked about what actors are able to carry out the policy. The results demonstrate the potential of meanings and practices that result from the joint between the fields of childhood and politics (AU)

FAPESP's process: 12/10876-8 - Political participation and childhood: approaches constructed from listening to children from a land struggle movement
Grantee:Regiane Sbroion de Carvalho
Support Opportunities: Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate