Renegotiating cultural authority: imperal culture and the NZ primary school curriculum in the 1930s

Soler, J. (2006). Renegotiating cultural authority: imperal culture and the NZ primary school curriculum in the 1930s. History of Education, 35(1) pp. 11–25.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/00467600500419638

Abstract

The dominant influences that forged curriculum policy in relation to the literacy curriculum in New Zealand during the 1930s can be seen to be enmeshed in the politics of the wider context of what de Castell and Luke have identified as the 'literacy ideologies of the British Empire'. It was these literacy ideologies and concerns over the cultural authority of 'standard English' that were to spark a growing public and professional condern during the 1930s over new Zealanders' speech and the growing 'insidious' influence of American-derived popular culture. These tensions led to debates that would eventually highlight the need for New Zealanders to develop their own national and cultural identity. They would also bring into question the role of Maori language and culture in New Zealand primary school education, and herald the first challenges to the cultural dominance of the English language in New Zealand's Native schools in teh late 1930s.

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