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Series: Vernon Series in Sociology

Help is just a click away: Social Network Sites and Support for Parents of Children with Special Needs

I-Jung Grace Lu, University of Manchester, UK

March 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-607-2
Availability: In stock
201pp. ¦ $58 £44 €49

Feeling alone, searching for help, searching for a sense of belonging and identity: parents of children with special needs face various difficulties in their daily lives. But help and support can be extremely hard to obtain for these parents since they are limited by resources, location and time. However, things started to change when the World Wide Web began to connect people together. We now live in an era when networks of power can be achieved and maintained through virtual connections on the internet, where instant communication can be a form of power. This book hopes to shed light on how the simple act of “clicking” can empower (and, contrariwise, in some cases, disempower) parents to locate help and support. This book also discusses the shifting role of these parents from those seeking help to those who provide help for other parents through the virtual networks they have built on various social networking sites. When examining these issues, this book takes into consideration the Asian concept of Face, in which identity is an image agreed by society. This book will offer insights for parents, researchers and social workers, as well as for anyone else who hopes to understand what is taking place on the ‘net’ and how to be involved in the networking process of providing support for people around you. It allows the readers to see how support nowadays can really be just a click away.

New Perspectives on African Childhood

Constructions, Histories, Representations and Understandings

Edited by De-Valera NYM Botchway, University of Cape Coast, Ghana et al.

January 2019 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-534-1
Availability: In stock
278pp. ¦ $53 £40 €45

What does it mean to be a child in Africa? In the detached Western media, narratives of penury, wickedness and death have dominated portrayals of African childhood. The hegemonic lens of the West has failed to take into account the intricacies of not only what it means to be an African child in local and culturally specific contexts, but also African childhood in general. Challenging colonial discourses, this edited volume guides the reader through different comprehensions and perspectives of childhood in Africa. Using a blend of theory, empiricism and history, the contributors to this volume offer studies from a range of fields including African literature, Afro-centric psychology and sociology. Importantly, in its eclectic geographical coverage of Africa, this book unashamedly presents the good, the bad and the ugly of African childhood. The resilience, creativity, pains and triumphs of African childhood are skilfully woven together to present the myriad of lived experiences and aspirations of children from across Africa. As an important contribution to African childhood studies, this book has the potential to be used by policymakers to shape, sustain or change socio-cultural, economic and education systems that accommodate African childhood dynamics and experiences at different levels.

65+. The Best Years of Your Life

With lessons for people of every age

Peter Bowden, University of Sydney

August 2018 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-445-0
Availability: In stock
136pp. ¦ $43 £31 €35

What is the key to happiness in later life? Since the time of the ancient philosophers such as Plato and Aristotle, the human race has questioned and written about what makes us happy. But with the rise of life expectancy and rapidly ageing populations, happiness in later life has become a major topic of debate. Drawing on three sources, the lessons of history, a survey of 150 people aged over 65 and the findings of the present-day positive psychologists, this book analyses and considers what it means to be in happy in later life and how it can be achieved. Bowden reflects on our many and differing views of life after retirement and finds lessons that can also contribute to our happiness in earlier years. Importantly, this book also asks, and answers, what role governments and our social institutions play in bringing about happiness. This valuable and well-informed insight into happiness in later life leaves the reader with little doubt that the post-65 years can indeed be your best.

Frozen Justice: Lessons from Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Failed Transitional Justice Strategy

Jared O. Bell

July 2018 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-204-3
Availability: In stock
154pp. ¦ $55 £40 €45

In May 1993 the United Nations Security Council founded the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Based in the Hague, Netherlands, the ICTY was formed with the objective of prosecuting those who had committed war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina and elsewhere in the former Yugoslavia during the early to mid-90s. During its mandate (1993-2017), the tribunal heard many cases and tried numerous perpetrators, from those who carried out the killings to those who orchestrated and ordered them. In spite of its accomplishments, the ICTY is considered to be highly controversial. It is debated if the ICTY did enough to foster healing and reconciliation in many of the conflict-torn societies. Many scholars argue that the tribunal operated adequately within their mandate and sought to promote justice and reconciliation, however, those who lived through the brutal wars would argue that there has simply been no justice. Importantly, Bosnia and Herzegovina still remains a country divided by issues of post-conflict justice, among other things. In 2010 a government-led strategic plan emerged that was intended to deal with the unfinished “business” of justice and promote reconciliation throughout the country. However, it failed to do this, and there is currently no political will or momentum to revive it. But, was this strategy doomed to failure from the beginning? In the form of a quantitative study, this book examines the possibility of reconciliation being achieved in Bosnia and Herzegovina through the methods fostered by the strategy. Focusing on three major cities, Sarajevo, Mostar, and Banja Luka, Dr. Jared Bell surveyed nearly 500 people in order to shed light on the subject of the national transitional justice strategy and reconciliation from the perspective of the everyday populace.

A Threatened Rural Idyll? Informal social control, exclusion and the resistance to change in the English countryside

Nathan Aaron Kerrigan, Centre for Advances in Behavioural Science, Coventry University, UK

June 2018 / ISBN: 978-1-62273-418-4
Availability: In stock
270pp. ¦ $58 £42 €47

Issues concerning globalisation, protection of identity and resistance to change at the national level (e.g., Brexit) have been the cause of much public and scholarly debate. With this in mind, this book demonstrates how these national, and indeed global narratives, have impacted on and are influenced by ‘going-ons’ in local contexts. By situating these national narratives within a rural context, Kerrigan expertly explores, through ethnographic research, how similar consequences of informal social control and exclusion are maintained in rural England in order to protect rural identity from social and infrastructural change. Drawing on observation, participant observation, and in-depth interviews, ‘A Threatened Rural Idyll’ illustrates how residents from a small but developing rural town in the South of England perceived changes associated with globalisation, such as population growth, inappropriate building developments, and the influx of service industries. For many of the residents, particularly those of middle-class status and long-standing in the town, these changes were seen as a direct threat to the rural character of the town. The investigation highlights how community dynamics and socio-spatial organisation of daily life work to protect the rural traditions inherent in the social and spatial landscape of the town and to maintain the dominance of its largely white, middle-class character. As a result, Kerrigan contends that the resistance to change has the consequence of constructing a social identity that attempts to reinforce the notions of a rural idyll to the exclusion of processes and people seen as representing different values and ideals.

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