ERIC Number: EJ719159
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2005-May
Gender, the City and the Politics of Schooling: Towards a Collective Biography of Women "Doing Good" as Public Moralists in Victorian London
Gender and Education, v17 n2 p143-163 May 2005
This article tells the stories of four middle class, white, English women whose participation in educational policy making is little known: Annie Leigh Browne (1851-1936), Margaret MacDonald (1870-1911), Hilda Miall-Smith (born 1861) and Honnor Morten (1861-1913). In doing so, it provides a perspective on the circumstances that enabled or encouraged or compelled women's political mobilization in the socially divided Victorian city. Working through local government, voluntary societies, women's organizations and settlement houses they operated at the margins of high politics and yet were self-consciously redrawing the imagined boundaries of political terrain. Combined, their stories suggest the power of female networks to challenge a landscape of male public space within a matrix of specific local circumstances and cultural politics. The paper uses the creation and presentation of stories about the self across a range of social and cultural practices, both public and private, to situate the women as public moralists. They had strong commitments to "doing good", which they combined with a feminist agenda. The author suggests past women's political initiatives raise contradictory issues that still leave contemporary feminism uncertain and confused.
Descriptors: Social History, Activism, Feminism, Biographies, Middle Class, Females, Social Action, Politics of Education, Nursing, Educational Policy, Foreign Countries, Gender Issues, Altruism
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (London)