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John Wall

Professor of Philosophy, Religion, and Childhood Studies at Rutgers University, US

Director of the Childism Institute

Co-Director of the Children's Voting Colloquium

John Wall is a theoretical ethicist who works at the intersection of political philosophy, post-structuralism, and children's rights. His nine books, along with articles, chapters, podcasts, interviews, and other work, explore what it means to expand normative imaginations in response to lived experiences of difference. He is best known for his innovative concept of childism, or the structural empowerment of children, as well as his advocacy for ageless suffrage.

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I believe that ethical and political life are grounded in normative assumptions that always need critique and transformation. My most fundamental theoretical work tries to articulate what this means with a philosophy of moral poetics that describes social relations as inherently creative. Arguably the most profound test of moral critique is the marginalization of children, for whom my theory of childism is a systemic lens of empowerment. Finally, moral poetics and childism demand a reimagined understanding of democratic voting that deconstructs its engained adultism and includes the entire demos regardless of age.

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