New Book on Care, Socialization and Play in Ancient Attica

Our SSCIP member, Maria Sommer, has a fascinating new book:

Care, Socialization and Play in Ancient Attica: A Developmental Childhood Archaeological Approach

Maria Sommer and Dion Sommer

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Care, Socialization and Play in Ancient Attica scrutinizes in how infants and young children were nursed, cared for and socialized in the oikos (family unit). In what ways were mothers and fathers emotionally engaged in their offspring or were they merely indifferent? What were the developmental consequences of growing up in multiple relationships? How were young children engaged in various types of play in everyday life and what toys were made for and handled by infants and young children? The developmental significance of toys and play is highlighted, as well as their cultural and sacral functions in ancient Athenian society.

The subtitle A Developmental Childhood Archaeology Approach indicates an interdisciplinary paradigm by combining childhood archaeology with recent developmental childhood psychology. This book reconstructs the social and behavioural world of infants and young children in ancient Greece based on a rich collection of archaeological finds from the classical period. It presents a selection of never-before-seen child artifacts which uncover groundbreaking evidence supporting new ideas on child development. Despite a stark contrast to the world of infants and young children in the 21st century, the book’s analyses will also present remarkable similarities.

198 pages


Published 2015

ISBN 978 87 7124 297 3