Nineteenth Century British Women's Education brings together key documents in the Victorian feminist campaign to establish and improve girls’ and women’s education. Drawing widely on articles from the feminist and established press, government papers, newspapers, professional and association journals, as well as memoirs, addresses, pamphlets and reviews, this collection gives researchers access to nineteenth-century debates on improving girls’ and women’s education and women’s work as educators.
The collection is divided overall into two sections, both of which incorporate materials that argue for the improvement of girls’ and women’s education as well as arguments made against education for girls and women. In examining the campaign to establish higher education for women, the first volumes include the writings of such primary figures as Emily Davies, Lydia Becker, Barbara Bodichon, Jessie Boucherett, Josephine Butler, Frances Power Cobbe, Millicent Garrett Fawcett, Maria Grey and Emily Shirreff in addition to illustrating the significance of institutions such as Girton and Newnham Colleges. Later volumes document women's work as educators, and include writings by Mary Carpenter, Dorothea Beale, Frances Mary Buss, and the Shirreff sisters Maria and Emily, gifted educators of girls at the elementary and secondary levels, and women whose educational practice embodied the arguments they made on behalf of girls’ education. These volumes also chart the importance of the Governesses’ Benevolent Institution, the Schools Inquiry Commission and the Journal of Women’s Education Union in charting the increasing organization and professionalization of women teachers.
Edited and with new introductions by Susan Hamilton and Janice Schroeder, Nineteenth Century British Women's Education is destined to be an invaluable reference resource to all future scholars of feminism and the history of education.