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Child Labour in Rural Indonesia: Children and Parents' Perspectives

Nurhadi, Nurhadi (2015) Child Labour in Rural Indonesia: Children and Parents' Perspectives. PhD thesis, University of York.

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Abstract

This thesis provides a valuable new contribution for understanding the nature of child labour within the agricultural sector in Indonesia. It presents new empirical evidence and interpretation of child work in rural Java from both a parental and a child perspective and it raises important implications for child labour policy. This purpose is in line with efforts to solve the problems of child labour in Indonesia. It is also designed to contribute to address current theoretical problems of child work and of childhood studies. The empirical element involved a detailed qualitative case study of 20 working children aged between 11-14 years old and their parents/caregivers in two communities in Central Java and East Java. An in-depth qualitative interview was conducted with the parents and separately with the children to reveal their different understandings and experiences of the working lives of children. Specially designed visual and material methods appropriate to children ages were adopted to help the children express their views more easily. Thematic analysis and NVivo 10 were employed to analyse the data. Three key sets of findings are highlighted from this study. First, children's work in the agricultural sector in Javanese society was seen as a form of economic participation, a form of personal development and a form of moral obligation to the family. Second, children were seen as competent agents who were able to identify any risks and harm associated with their work; however, there were also intergenerational differences in the perceptions of risk whereby parents were unaware of the children’s-perceptions and understandings of the routine risks they faced. Third, the practice of child work and the perception of risk in Javanese society were not conducted in a separate sphere of family life; rather they were embedded in cultural and family practices and were intimately connected to children's life at play and education, and to sibling relationships, child-parent relationships and friendships. The results from this thesis challenge the prevailing view that child work is a necessarily destructive element within children’s well-being and well-becoming. Instead, it argues that we need to recognize the positive value of children’s participation in work. The evidence suggests that policy makers should question a state led top-down global standard model of prohibition and listen more closely to children and their parents’ views on the benefits of children’s participation in some kinds of work. However, this should be done with regard to the local contexts that take account of the fact that children also require protection from certain risks and harm associated with child work and animal husbandry. The key message is that a non- prohibitionist stance must also recognise that the protective factors for children cannot be considered in isolation from their family and cultural practices that take place within their local communities.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: child labour, childhood, family practice
Academic Units: The University of York > Social Policy and Social Work (York)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.665052
Depositing User: Mr Nurhadi Nurhadi
Date Deposited: 03 Sep 2015 12:29
Last Modified: 24 Jul 2018 15:20
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/9691

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