Jocurile copilăriei de altădată



The study, based upon the late 19th century, presents several aspects of Romanian childhood. It is presented as a specific age, with the corresponding games and toys of the area and it is compared to other ages, stressing out the economic role of children in the family, a role that steals away the playing time as the child grows and the seasons follow. The study also points out two different types of childhood: the one in the top world – those who afforded real toys, had enough time for playing, but also had numerous restrictions from their parents – and the one of the peasants’ or handicraftsmen’s children, who were involved in the „family business” at an early age, the playing time being often „stolen” from the working time. Somewhere between these two worlds we find those who, regardless of their social status or fortune, understood to leave children the freedom of playing, which enhanced their imagination and abilities. The study is based upon archives, memoirs, museum exhibits, photographs and the press of the time. The analyze of all the above described aspects is even more imperative if we consider Huisinga’s opinion that they are all parts of the cultural framework of a society. In Homo ludens he states that not only is the game a cultural activity, but culture itself finds its roots in play. The aim of this study is, however, to point out the way children spent their time, either their play had a cultural component, was a socializing activity, or they just had fun. Considering that, until now, for Romania in general and Transylvania in particular we only had ethnological and / or mythical approaches of this subject, the present study constitutes into a climax of all previous researches.

Keywords: jocuri, copilărie, activități, restricții, imaginație, cultură, reprezentări