Review of Working Childhoods: Youth Agency and the Environment in India by Jane Dyson

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review


Working Childhoods is a book about the working lives of young people in a remote region of the high Himalayas. Unlike many other studies of working children in the global south, this book engages little with emotive debates about the nature of ‘proper’ childhood, international conventions or state interventions into the lives of labouring children. Rather its focus is on the actual lived experiences of children whose work is invaluable in maintaining the livelihoods of their families in the harsh remote environment in which they live. The result of Dyson's doctoral fieldwork in 2003 and 2004, the broader contribution of this book is to debates about child and youth agency. Yet, unlike other studies of children's agency, which tend to follow individual children through their environments, this study takes the environment as its fixed point through which children live, move, labour and play.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-519
Number of pages2
JournalThe Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 7 Oct 2015
Externally publishedYes


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