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Juvenile Delinquency in the 19th and 20th Centuries: East-West Comparisons

sponsored by the Fritz Thyssen Stiftung           

12th and 13th March 2011

Centre for British Studies, Humboldt Universität zu Berlin

Keynote Speakers:

Professor Barry Goldson (University of Liverpool)

Constructions and Reconstructions of 'Juvenile Delinquency' in the West: A Socio-Historical Survey

Dr Barak Kushner (University of Cambridge) Biography

Empire's Little Helpers: Juvenile Crime and the State in East Asia, 1900-2000


The history of juvenile delinquency has too often been written from an exclusively national perspective with little in the way of comparative or transnational studies. Particularly lacking are comparisons between the construction and understanding of juvenile delinquency in the cultural fields of East and West. How have attempts to define and problematise child and youth behaviours differed between Eastern and Western cultures? Have children and childhood been imagined differently in East and West? How have cultural constructions of the young affected the ways in which the behaviour of children and young people has been classified and understood in different societies? Is ‘juvenile delinquency’ a peculiarly western idea?

This two-day conference brings together scholars at all levels working in a variety of fields including  history, sociology and literary studies to discuss these and related questions. It is hoped that such discussions will lead to a more nuanced understanding of the ways in which concepts of childhood, youth and delinquency have been shaped by particular cultural contexts.


For the full conference programme, please click here

Please note the programme may still be subject to change


To register for the conference, please email with your name and institution by 1st March 2011.

The registration fee which includes attendance, coffee breaks and lunch on both days of the conference is 20 Euros (15 Euros concession rate) which can be paid either at the reception desk at the start of the conference or in advance by bank transfer. Bank account details will be provided to complete the transfer upon receipt of the registration email.


Conference Organisers:   

Heather Ellis (Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)   

Lily Chang (University of Oxford)


To download the conference poster, please click here