Skip to Main Content
Have library access? Log in through your library
Educational Regimes and Anglo-American Democracy

Educational Regimes and Anglo-American Democracy

Ronald Manzer
  • Book Info
    Educational Regimes and Anglo-American Democracy
    Book Description:

    Anglo-American democracy is a vital and respected political tradition. Yet surprisingly little attention is given to what exactly are its distinguishing political ideas. To understand Anglo-American democracy requires more than simply observing its abstract commitments to basic political goods of community, equality, and liberty; it requires also knowing how ideas are put into practice. Schools are places where people teach and learn; they are also institutional expressions of the principles, values, and beliefs of their political community.

    Manzer's comparative political study of schools in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States focuses on five fundamental problems in the historical development of Anglo-American educational regimes: the original creation of systems of elementary education in the nineteenth century as publicly provided and publicly governed; the transformation of secondary schools in the early twentieth century to match the emerging structure of occupational classes in capitalist industrial economies; the planning for secondary schools in the development of the welfare state after the Second World War; the accommodation of social diversity in public schools from the 1960s to the 1990s in response to increasingly strong assertions of ethnicity, language, race, and religion, not only as criteria for equal treatment, but also as foundations of communal identity; and the educational reforms in the 1980s and 1990s that aimed to adapt public schools to the contemporary challenges of new information technology and burgeoning global capitalism.

    Removed from abstract political principle and observed in the policies of historical educational regimes, changing ideas of community, equality, and liberty not only reveal the likeness and diversity of Anglo-American democracy over time but also constitute criteria for making judgements about its extent and quality.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-7430-1
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

Export Selected Citations Export to NoodleTools Export to RefWorks Export to EasyBib Export a RIS file (For EndNote, ProCite, Reference Manager, Zotero, Mendeley...) Export a Text file (For BibTex)
  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-viii)
  3. List of Figures
    (pp. ix-x)
  4. List of Tables
    (pp. xi-xii)
  5. Preface
    (pp. xiii-2)
  6. Introduction: Educational Regimes and the Comparative Study of Anglo-American Democracy
    (pp. 3-28)

    Anglo-American democracy cannot be understood simply from observing its abstract commitments to the basic political goods of community, equality, and liberty; it must be understood as well through the political institutions and public policies it puts into practice.¹ Because of the close connection between democracy and education, interpreting the institutions and policies of Anglo-American educational regimes is one way of understanding commonality and difference, stability and change, in the ideas and practice of Anglo-American democracy.

    Beyond their primary individual and collective activities of teaching and learning, schools have a threefold significance for Anglo-American democracy - instrumental, expressive, and constitutive.² First,...

  7. 1 Public Instruction
    (pp. 29-79)

    In 1776 there were two landmark events in the Anglo-American political tradition that, among their many effects, initiated a prolonged public debate over the role of the state in the provision and governance of popular education. One of these events was the publication ofThe Wealth of Nationsby Adam Smith. The other was the issuance on 4 July of the Declaration of Independence, of which the principal author was Tho mas Jefferson. Adam Smithʼs persuasive vision of the individual liberty and economic efficiency that resulted from capitalist markets not only served immediately to discredit mercantilist theories of imperial economic...

  8. 2 Industrial Efficiency
    (pp. 80-133)

    In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, elite opinion in each of the Anglo-American countries became fixated on industrial efficiency. Material prosperity and national security were identified with maximizing economic productivity and surpassing international rivals. The new imperative of national industrial efficiency inspired demands for reforms that would fit public education to the needs and opportunities of an industrial economy. The main purpose of public education was no longer simply the elementary schooling of virtuous citizens and/or believing Christians; it must now include assigning young people to occupational classes and supplying them with appropriate vocational training. The attention of...

  9. 3 Welfare State
    (pp. 134-191)

    The devastating impact of worldwide depression in the 1930s and the challenging problems of postwar reconstruction in the 1940s together shifted the political agenda and transformed the structures and purposes of government in the Anglo-American democracies. Economic growth remained a high priority. To the array of existing interventions through industrial policy were added stabilization policy instruments to minimize fluctuations in the level of economic production, rates of unemployment and inflation, and balance of trade. Social security was the new priority; the welfare state was the counterpart of the managed economy. Based on the principles of universality and comprehensiveness, state intervention...

  10. 4 Pluralist Society
    (pp. 192-246)

    Historically, the Anglo-American countries have been culturally diverse or plural societies, but their public philosophies have lacked a concept of pluralist society as a defining characteristic and collective good of Anglo-American democracy.¹ On the contrary, public institutions and policies have recognized and promoted ‘white Australia’ and ‘British New Zealand,’ an ethnic melting pot with racial segregation of African Americans in the United States, British versus French ethnic and linguistic nationalism in Canada, English linguistic and ethnic imperialism in the United Kingdom, and assimilation of Aboriginal peoples in the frontier societies. In the years following the Second World War, however, especially...

  11. 5 Global Capitalism
    (pp. 247-302)

    In the late twentieth century there emerged a remarkably broad intellectual consensus that advanced industrial societies are now best understood as post-industrial societies. At the root of their ongoing transformation is a contemporary technological revolution comparable in its global impact and human implications to the ‘agricultural revolution’ that began in the seventeenth century or the ‘industrial revolution’ that dominated world economic development from the early nineteenth century past the middle of the twentieth century. Like the agricultural and industrial revolutions, the contemporary revolution in information technology rests on new techniques of information storage, processing, and communication; a fundamental change in...

  12. Conclusion: Educational Regimes and Comparative Ideas of Democracy
    (pp. 303-346)

    Who are the people who constitute the community? In what ways are they equal? What freedom do they have to make both private and public choices that accord with their needs and wants? These questions derive from the three basic dimensions of democracy as a form of government based on rule by the people - community, equality, and liberty. When they are removed from abstract political principle and applied to specific educational regimes, they constitute not only the framework for describing both the likeness and the diversity of Anglo-American democracy but also the criteria for making judgments about its extent...

  13. Figures and Tables
    (pp. 347-362)
  14. Notes on Statistics and Statistical Sources
    (pp. 363-380)
  15. Notes
    (pp. 381-568)
  16. Index of Names
    (pp. 569-574)
  17. Index of Subjects
    (pp. 575-602)
  18. Back Matter
    (pp. 603-604)