The impact of violence on children’s health and development has had growing attention in global and national politics. Research on children’s experiences of violence has increased in recent years, and this article aims to add to this literature by highlighting key messages and learning points from the experiences of researchers who have worked with children and violence across the different contexts of the UK and South Africa. As qualitative and quantitative researchers, our concepts, aims, methods, resources and approaches were very different, but we all faced similar challenges in working with children and violence in contexts where adults’ views about what violence counted predominated. We argue that children’s participation in research and highlighting children’s own understandings, agency and negotiations in relation to violence are crucial for challenging sometimes unhelpful taken-for-granted views about the impact of violence on children’s lives.
Lorraine RadfordUniversity of Central Lancashire, Lancashire, UK