Searching for a middleground in children’s rights: the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in Ghana

Twum-Danso, Afua Oppong (2008). Searching for a middleground in children’s rights: the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child in Ghana. University of Birmingham. Ph.D.


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The Convention on the Rights of the Child, adopted unanimously by the United Nations General Assembly in 1989, is the world’s most widely and rapidly ratified international convention. Although it was hoped that the Convention would have an enormously positive impact on all children, this has not happened in many parts of the world for a variety of reasons, including its western bias, which has, hitherto, dominated the debate on children’s rights. However, this universality vs. relativity dichotomy does not help us to protect children on the ground. Hence, it is necessary to move beyond the binary debate relating to the universality and relativity of children’s rights and engage with children’s local realities, which illustrate that there is, indeed, a middle ground in which people live their lives that may facilitate dialogue on children’s rights with local communities. In order to identify this middle ground the thesis focused on eliciting the perceptions of adults and children in two local communities in Accra, Ghana, the first country to ratify the Convention in February 1990, on children’s rights, constructing childhood and the socialization of children and their implications for the implementation of the Convention. Special attention is given to Article 12, which has caused controversy in countries around the world.

Type of Work: Thesis (Doctorates > Ph.D.)
Award Type: Doctorates > Ph.D.
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Arts & Law
School or Department: School of History and Cultures, Centre for West African Studies
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HC Economic History and Conditions
J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
D History General and Old World > DT Africa


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