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From intergenerational transmission to intra-active ethical-generational becoming: Children, parents, crabs and the activity of rockpooling

Martens, Lydia



Global climate change poses challenging questions for how human beings should be living their lives in a more-than-human world. These questions are complex and multifaceted, and thus demand actions across a broad range of social and political fronts. This article engages with a sub-question of this broader concern, namely, how more-than-human ethics of care are learned in family life, and the insights this provides for the performance of the generational familial categories of child and parent. It draws on ethnographic research, funded by the British Academy, in which I researched the embodied and moral engagements of children and their families in activities on the seaside in North Scotland. Drawing on Barad's agential realism (2003, 2007), I focus on the activity of rockpooling and analyse a particular rockpooling event with the Crab Fisher family, in order to comprehend this family's intra-actions with the tide, with crabs and with animal death. I draw out the saliences of the analysis for what it means to care in a more-than-human world, for the question of ethical-generational becoming, and for the multifaceted quality of learning.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Aug 22, 2016
Publication Date Nov 1, 2016
Journal Families, Relationships and Societies
Print ISSN 2046-7435
Publisher Policy Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 5
Issue 3
Pages 447-462
Keywords crabs, embodied care, ethical-generational becoming, intra-activity, rockpooling
Publisher URL