In this article, we bring to the foreground an understudied dimension of working children’s lives in the Global South: their access to money and the consumption this facilitates. Drawing on life history interviews, we show that among the Gamo weavers of Ethiopia, the modern phenomenon of a monetised childhood is at least six decades old and an element of the informal apprenticeships through which Gamo children learn to weave. Qualitative research with young weavers shows that both girls and boys become involved in weaving. Yet the amount of senbeta misa money they receive differs substantially, fuelling distinctly different consumption practices and reinforcing broader gender relations. Zooming in on boys’ monetised leisure activities, we furthermore argue that through consumption belonging to age-based, ethnic peer groups is realised. Moreover, while the monetisation of leisure is shaped by globalisation and market forces, we show that boys and young men themselves also actively contribute to the monetisation of their leisure activities and thereby transform the nature of play

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Keywords childhood, consumption, gender, money
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Journal Global Studies of Childhood
Taye, F.N, & Huijsmans, R.B.C. (2019). Monetised Childhoods: Money and consumption among young weavers in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Global Studies of Childhood. doi:10.1177/2043610619895021