NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ813356
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Nov
Pages: 23
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-0018-2680
The World the Students Made: Agriculture and Education at American Missions in Colonial Zimbabwe, 1930-1960
Leedy, Todd H.
History of Education Quarterly, v47 n4 p447-469 Nov 2007
In 1930, the same year in which the segregationist Land Apportionment Act was passed, the governor of Rhodesia addressed a meeting of representatives from the various missionary organizations operating in the colony. He proceeded to argue against the sort of education that might create a class of African intellectuals who would eventually challenge white economic and political dominance. Like most missions in Africa during this period, American Methodist Episcopal Church (AMEC) stations, particularly those with boarding schools, already incorporated substantial amounts of agricultural work into their curriculum. Farm production utilizing these student workers helped defray cash expenses. While student labor figured prominently in calculations of station self-sufficiency, missionaries also hoped agricultural training would instill ideas about stewardship and the value of labor. Consequently, both AMEC agricultural and industrial programs drew heavily for their inspiration upon the philosophy of teaching by doing, reflecting the general sentiment that "manual labor is one of the items that holds the people to usefulness." Therefore, AMEC missions attempted to provide (at least until the 1950s) the type of education which might enable the African student "to take his place in life, a life which is and will continue to be predominantly and intensely rural and agricultural." Yet evidence reveals that pupils and parents usually had their own priorities that could result in conflict with mission authorities. By the early 1960s, continued student pressure and significant changes in the broader political economy of colonial Zimbabwe would necessitate a general rethinking of mission education policy. This article describes the agriculture and education at American missions in colonial Zimbabwe from 1930-1960. (Contains 96 footnotes.)
Blackwell Publishing. 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148. Tel: 800-835-6770; Tel: 781-388-8599; Fax: 781-388-8232; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Rhodesia; Zimbabwe