The assessment may be developed in various ways including, for example, through consideration of relevant empirical studies and/or preferences to contrasting theories such as those associated with Hibernia, feminist and post-modernist thinkers. Contrasts with functionalist theory may have some value, but this approach Is likely to be rather uninspiring in relation to the question. At the higher end of the band, look for developments such as consideration of different strands of Marxist theory and/or some nascent recognition of the complexity of the issues raised by the question. 19-25) Answers at this level will demonstrate a good understanding of Marxist theory and make a concerted and well-informed attempt to assess its relevance for understanding modern Industrial societies. Within reason, we should not be too prescriptive about how ‘modern societies’ Is defined by the candidate, and the analysis need not be confined to Western industrial societies. At the lower end of the band, the assessment may rely heavily on identifying general weaknesses and/or strengths with Marxist theory.

Higher in the band, the focus will be on specific points about the relevance of that theory for understanding modern societies, albeit that this may be conveyed through theoretical debates rather or the laterally relative nature of childhood experiences, would Justify a mark In the top half of the band. (7?12) Some candidates may respond to the question by discussing the importance of solicitation in the construction of human identities. References to so-called feral children are likely to figure in this type of response.

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A general discussion of solicitation is not entirely inappropriate in relation to the question, though the relevance is somewhat marginal and so an answer that is based solely on this approach would merit no more than 10 marks. A better answer within this band would demonstrate some awareness that the social Identities associated with childhood, to some extent, vary historically and/or across cultures. A few basic references to Aries’ work, for example, would be sufficient to reach the top of the band.

Likewise, the use of cross-cultural examples of differences in childhood would be a way to demonstrate a basic understanding of the requirements of the question. (13-18) A sound account of Aries’ contribution to the debate about the social instruction of childhood, with little or no assessment, would merit the lower part of the band. Similarly, a reasonably detailed description of cross-cultural examples of differences in childhood would be worth up to 15 marks. To reach the top part of the band, however, there needs to be some assessment of the view expressed in the question.

This could be in the form of a critique of Aries’ work or the evaluation might be developed through identifying a wider range of historical and/or cultural evidence to support the notion that childhood is a social construct. At this level, the assessment will lack subtlety and range. (19-25) As for the top of the previous band, thong ten assessment wall now De sustained Ana well laureate. Can Lemons AT the question will be addressed to some extent, so that the candidate discusses not only the historically relative nature of childhood, but also explores the influence of social class and/or ethnicity on childhood identities.

While the general line of argument adopted by the candidate may be to support Aries’ view that the identities associated with childhood are socially constructed, at the top of the band there should also be awareness of some of the limitations in the evidence and arguments used by Aries and other sociologists who view childhood as a social construct. Appropriate references to socio-biology and/or post-modernist theory might also be used to demonstrate the sophisticated analysis required to trigger the top of the band.