For the love of cuddly toys

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Abstract

This essay reflects upon a particular moment at the end of Chris Philo’s Children’s Geographies lecture [see Philo 2016. “‘Childhood is Measured Out by Sounds and Sights and Smells, Before the Dark Hour of Reason Grows’: Children’s Geographies at 12.” Children’s Geographies 14 (6): 623–640. doi:10.1080/14733285.2016.1187896], when discussion turned to cuddly toys. I recall a particular mood constituted in and by this moment: of apparent bashfulness, hesitancy, things-left-unsaid, and disinclination to discuss cuddly toys within the formal space of an academic conference. I suggest that this incident might be understood as indicative of three sets of silences which, still, characterise a great deal of work within the fantastically vibrant sub-disciplines of Children’s Geographies and Cultural Geographies. This argument is accompanied by photographic portraits of three particular toys: Angus, Arnold and the B.B.D. I hope that the presence of these portraits helps bring to the surface something of the often-silenced geographies–of memories, affects, intimacies and vulnerabilities, of play, fun and care, and of material and popular cultures–upon which my argument is focused.

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APA

Horton, J. (2018). For the love of cuddly toys. Children’s Geographies, 16(4), 446–454. https://doi.org/10.1080/14733285.2018.1457735

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