Sociology | Children/Youth - U.S. and Europe
S660 | 12874 | Corsaro
S660 Topic: Children and Youth In Contemporary Perspective:
The U.S. and Europe
This course will examine children and youth and social policies
related to children, youth and families from a comparative
perspective with a focus on the United States and Europe. In the
course we will review and discuss recent theoretical writings and
empirical research on children and youth from both a micro and macro
perspective. We will also examine how cultural values and social
policies in the areas of education, family, and work affect the
lives of children and youth and their peer cultures. Finally, we
will undertake comparative case studies of various European
countries and the U.S. regarding both various social problems of
children and youth (family and maternity leave, daycare and early
education programs, poverty, crime, family disruption, child abuse
and violence, teenage pregnancy, etc.) and the policies which have
been enacted to address these problems.
Requirements for the course will include: (1) each student writing a
short position paper (letter to the editor) addressing a particular
social problem of children and youth in contemporary society from a
comparative perspective; (2) each student gathering information
regarding the quality of the lives of children and youth in a
specific European country and relating this information to existing
policy and the need for policy change in a class presentation; and
(3) a final paper in which each student develops their case study in
the more general frame of social welfare policies related to the
lives of children and youth in a comparative perspective. Students
will also be required to write a number of commentaries on class
Barbara R. Bergmann. Saving Our Children from Poverty: What the
United States Can Learn from France. New York: Russell Sage
William A. Corsaro, The Sociology of Childhood. (2nd edition).
Thousand Oaks, CA: Pine Forge Press, 2005.
William A. Corsaro and Luisa Molinari, I Compagni: Understanding
Children’s Transition from Preschool to Elementary School. New
York: Teacher College Press, 2005.
There will also be a number of class readings on electronic reserve.