Sixteen leading researchers in the burgeoning field of childhood studies contribute to this wide ranging volume covering urgent and important issues in the field. Demonstrating significant advances in social studies of childhood, the authors present new theoretical and/or empirical work, bringing original nuances and perspectives to bear on existing questions and introducing new topics. The contributions range from seeing children as provokers of the social system to highlighting hypermodern societies' trend towards intruding into children's lives with technical devices. In this sense the tension between agency and structure is not discarded, but reappears in new forms and contexts such as media, child work, and distribution of welfare. Children are seen as collectively creating their own worlds but at the other extreme, in orphanhood, they are prisoners of childhood. A book for an interdisciplinary readership.