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Bringing Environmentalism Home: Children’s influence on family consumption in the Nordic countries and beyond

Journal article
Authors Bengt Larsson
Magnus Andersson
Christina Osbeck
Published in Childhood
Volume 17
Issue 1
Pages 129-147
Publication year 2010
Published at Department of Sociology
Pages 129-147
Language en
Keywords cosmopolitanism, environmental education, governmentality, intergenerational influence, sustainable development
Subject categories Sociology


This article discusses children as contributors to sustainable ecological development. The aim of the article is to develop a framework for researching two questions: What are the prerequisites for children to become responsible environmentalists? What actual and potential influence do children have on their family’s consumption? Three theoretical perspectives are elaborated in relation to relevant empirical research: children as cosmopolitan actors and world citizens, children as ‘subjects of responsibilization’ in relation to the discourse on sustainable development and children as actors influencing family negotiations about consumption. The article concludes by suggesting methodological implications that follow from this framework.

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