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Teaching Britain examines teachers as key agents in the production of social knowledge. Teachers claimed intimate knowledge of everyday life among the poor and working class at home and non-white subjects abroad. They mobilized their knowledge in a wide range of mediums, from accounts of local happenings in their schools’ official log books to travel narratives based on summer trips around Britain and the wider world. Teachers also obsessively narrated and reflected on their own careers. Through these stories and the work they did every day, teachers imagined and helped to enact new models of professionalism, attitudes towards poverty and social mobility, ways of thinking about race and empire, and roles for the state. As highly visible agents of the state and beneficiaries of new state-funded opportunities, teachers also represented the largesse and the reach of the liberal state—but also the limits of both.
Oxford University Press
history of education, teachers, Victorian Britain, social investigation, social mobility, professionalism, expertise
School of Arts and Sciences
Education | History
Bischof, Christopher. Teaching Britain: Elementary Teachers and the State of the Everyday, 1846-1906. First edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2019.