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ERIC Number: ED161553
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Nov
Pages: 16
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Gimme, It's Mine!: Children's Concepts of Ownership as Revealed in Interaction.
Bluebond-Langner, Myra
This investigation probes nursery school activities and children's interactions in relation to private and communal property. Analysis of 27 hours of taped interaction spread over 4 months of participant observation reveals that children attempt to gain access to private property in a different way than they try to obtain access to communal property. When children requested permission to use other children's private property, their requests were simply granted or denied. Attempts to gain access to communal (school) property often involved disputes. Rules governing private property refer to the owner's control of who, how, for how long and to what end the privately owned object can be used. Communal property was governed by a rule that it had to be shared. Children used private, but not communal, property to gain another's attention, to enter a conversation or change the topic and to influence other children. Formal, daily curriculum activities regularly included lengthy discussions of trespassing and stealing. Highly structured show-and-tell circle time activities focused undivided group attention on objects which children brought from home. Children did not show the same thing two weeks in a row, and school property and school made objects were not shown. It is suggested that cognitive categories and rules explain the observed patterns of interaction. (Author/RH)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Ownership
Note: Paper presented at the Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Houston, Texas, November, 1977)