Role of art and creativity in child culture and socialization


Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapters

2 Citations (Scopus)


Children’s culture is multifarious and pluralistic, displaying layers of subcultures, meanings, and adult influences, extending from infancy through pubescence. It is recognized that the arts contribute significantly to promoting children’s wellbeing. Symbolic self-expression through the arts allows children to express complex feelings and hybrid identities. It supports validating individual and collective identities. It not only empowers children but also helps to improve their health and wellbeing. This chapter provides a review of the literature on the role of art and creativity in child wellbeing and socialization. Much of the literature is written by therapists, educators in the arts, and scholars in psychology and sociology. Each of these disciplines adopts a standpoint to discuss children’s wellbeing and happiness, sometimes at variance with each other. The foci of this review include (a) an overview of child wellbeing and the arts in the Western history; (b) the arts and play in child culture; and (c) the spiritual benefits of the arts. The discussion at the end offers a critique of some current views of children and the arts, reveals gaps in existing literature, and outlines suggestions for future research directions for child wellbeing in the arts from a holistic perspective. Copyright © 2014 Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHandbook of child well-being: Theories, methods and policies in global perspective
EditorsAsher BEN-ARIEH, Ferran CASAS, Ivar FRØNES, Jill E. KORBIN
Place of PublicationNew York
ISBN (Electronic)9789048190638
ISBN (Print)9789048190621
Publication statusPublished - 2014


Lo, K. Y., & Matsunobu, K. (2014). Role of art and creativity in child culture and socialization. In A. Ben-Arieh, F. Casas, I. Frønes, & J. E. Korbin (Eds.), Handbook of child well-being: Theories, methods and policies in global perspective (pp. 1053-1078). New York: Springer.


  • Spiritual experience
  • Artistic activity
  • Musical expression
  • Spiritual awareness
  • Relational consciousness


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