'Pretend I was Mummy': Children's Production of Authority and Subordinance in Their Pretend Play Interaction During Disputes

Cobb-Moore, Charlotte (2012) 'Pretend I was Mummy': Children's Production of Authority and Subordinance in Their Pretend Play Interaction During Disputes. In Danby, Susan J. & Theobald, Maryanne Agnes (Eds.) Disputes in Everyday Life: Social and Moral Orders of Children and Young People: Sociological Studies of Children and Youth. Emerald Group Publishing Limited , Bingley, U.K., pp. 85-118.

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Abstract

Purpose – This chapter examines an episode of pretend play amongst a group of young girls in an elementary school in Australia, highlighting how they interact within the membership categorization device ‘family’ to manage their social and power relationships.

Approach – Using conversation analysis and membership categorization analysis, an episode of video-recorded interaction that occurs amongst a group of four young girls is analyzed.

Findings – As disputes arise amongst the girls, the mother category is produced as authoritative through authoritative actions by the girl in the category of mother, and displays of subordination on the part of the other children, in the categories of sister, dog and cat.

Value of paper – Examining play as a social practice provides insight into the social worlds of children. The analysis shows how the children draw upon and co-construct family-style relationships in a pretend play context, in ways that enable them to build and organize peer interaction. Authority is highlighted as a joint accomplishment that is part of the social and moral order continuously being negotiated by the children. The authority of the mother category is produced and oriented to as a means of managing the disputes within the pretend frame of play.

Impact and interest:

2 citations in Scopus
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3 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 58492
Item Type: Book Chapter
DOI: 10.1108/S1537-4661(2012)0000015008
ISBN: 978-1780528762
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (160500) > Public Policy (160510)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > POLICY AND ADMINISTRATION (160500) > Social Policy (160512)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY (160000) > SOCIOLOGY (160800)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Copyright Owner: Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Deposited On: 20 Mar 2013 01:19
Last Modified: 22 Oct 2015 16:01

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