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Title: Education and social values in British Guiana 1870-1914.
Author: Fraser, P. D.
ISNI:       0000 0001 3483 4984
Awarding Body: University of Sussex
Current Institution: University of Sussex
Date of Award: 1976
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The failure of the gold industry in the 1890's and of the railway schemes of the early 20th century restricted the lives of most British Guianese to the coast. There the advanced nature of the sugar industry, more complex than its rivals and increasingly owned by non-resident companies, had enabled the planting interest to order politics to their ends, the strange semi-representative system of government giving elected members, mainly planters until the 20th century, major control over policy and finance. With the depression affecting the creole population from the late 1870's and everyone from the 1880's, there came a tendency to elevate economic considerations above all others, reflected throughout in the planters' attitudes and increasingly in the creoles' to the East Indians. Concerned with the deteriorating social conditions of the 1870's, the Anglicans, predominant in education, achieved a system of compulsory education with church control despite some opposition. This self-interested but humanitarian scheme was never properly implemented. Increased expenditure on education and the dubious compulsion of non-Christians to attend Christian schools gave its opponents their opportunity in 1882. Recently arrived in that year, Governor Irving, later an opponent of the planters, was induced by them and like minded officials to make education the scapegoat in reducing expenditure. Irving's methods, to eliminate the teachers' certificate salaries and introduce payments by results, provoked a debate in which interested parties concentrated on the economic effects of these changes. From then the equation of economy with efficiency and a sense of economic grievance among teachers became major concerns: neither agricultural education nor the special requirements of the immigrants' children were met. The compulsory education ordinance appeared an anomalous plan in a society dominated by the values of an industry concerned wholly with profit.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available