By David M Rosen
After we listen 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 stuffed with examples of youngsters all for warfare—from adolescent prisoner of conflict Andrew Jackson to Civil conflict drummer boys—who have been as soon as seen as symbols of nationwide satisfaction instead of indicators of human degradation.
In this bold new learn, anthropologist David M. Rosen investigates why our cultural conception of the kid soldier has replaced so significantly over the last centuries. baby squaddies within the Western mind's eye finds how Western conceptions of adolescence as a uniquely susceptible and blameless country are a comparatively fresh invention. moreover, Rosen bargains an illuminating background of the way human rights firms drew upon those sentiments to create the very time period “child soldier,” which they awarded because the embodiment of war’s human cost.
Filled with stunning ancient debts and facts—and revealing the explanations why one can't spell “infantry” with no “infant”—Child infantrymen within the Western mind's eye seeks to shake us out of our pervasive historic amnesia. It demanding situations us to prevent baby squaddies via a biased set of idealized assumptions approximately early life, in order that we will higher handle the realities of kids and pre-adolescents in strive against. featuring informative proof whereas interpreting fictional representations of the kid soldier in pop culture, this publication is either eye-opening and thought-provoking.
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Additional resources for Child Soldiers in the Western Imagination: From Patriots to Victims
Nor were boy soldiers forgotten after the war ended; their sacrifices were once again memorialized by their former comrades in arms and by the general public, making plain that Americans continued to validate and value their service. John “Jack” Travers Cornwell (1900–1916) The United States was not the only country in which the death of a child in battle became a rallying cry for patriotism. In Great Britain, the most famous young military hero of World War I was John “Jack” Travers Cornwell, a boy seaman first class in the Royal Navy.
Accordingly, common law recognized different levels of rights and responsibilities by both age and gender. ” A female could betrothed at age seven and consent or disagree to a marriage or bequeath her personal estate age at age twelve; she was regarded as having reached the age of legal discretion at age fourteen and reached “full age” at twenty- one. 18 We might today disagree with the details of the common law schema, but the legal recognition of a gradual unfolding of rights, duties, and responsibilities makes far more sense than the growing tendency in contemporary international law to draw a single bright-line distinction between childhood and adulthood at age eighteen.
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. These children, who were often as young as age twelve, were often given commissions either to help provide funds for the widows of fallen officers or as a reward for their father’s service.
Child Soldiers in the Western Imagination: From Patriots to Victims by David M Rosen