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The Childhood, Law & Policy Network (CLPN)

Dr Jessica K. Taft

Jessica K.

Professor of Latin American and Latino Studies, University of California Santa Cruz, United States



Dr. Taft’s research agenda focuses on the political lives of children and youth in North and South America. More specifically, she writes about youth activism and the ways that girls, children, and youth participate in social movements. Theoretically, she draws from intersectional feminism to illuminate how age functions as an axis of power and inequality in complex relation with other social differences. Her work explores how discourses about what it means to be a child, or a youth, or an adult shape the ways people experience and navigate these categories. Building on the important contributions of Latin American social movements and critical approaches to childhood, she challenges the naturalization of adults’ power over children and furthers our understanding of how young people can (and should) be included in democratic social and political life.



The Kids Are in Charge: Activism and Power in the Peruvian Movement of Working Children

Rebel Girls: Youth Activism and Social Change Across the Americas  


Child and youth activism; social movements; intergenerational relationships; age-based power; girls' politics
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