Freeing the Elephant-eating Boa: Theorizing Children in Philippine Social Science Research


Both the child character and the child audience contribute significantly to the body of research on childhood studies. How children think, learn, and behave have been researched in many studies on psychology and education. Meanwhile, the social sciences have also become a home for childhood studies due to the richness of content for children in broadcast and print, which is the focus of this literature review.

The paper explores how children are theorized in social sciences in the Philippines. Through a survey of prominent journals such as Plaridel, Humanities Diliman, Social Science Diliman, and Kritika Kultura, this paper identifies the discursive roles that children play in research concerning their communicative styles, and text and media consumption. In addition, the paper also analyzes how children are represented in literature on childhood studies.

This review encourages providing a more active role for children in research and literary works about and for them published in the social sciences, the arts, and the humanities. Children can have a wide and insightful imagination the way the Little Prince has. Children are not petty participants. Children matter. Children are powerful.