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Title: Girls' education in colonial Hong Kong (1841-1941) : gender, politics and experience
Author: Chiu, Patricia Pok-kwan
Awarding Body: University of Cambridge
Current Institution: University of Cambridge
Date of Award: 2009
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Drawing from archival documentary sources and oral history of women who were schoolgirls in the pre-war years, this thesis examines the history of girls’ education in pre-war colonial Hong Kong from four perspectives: the educational landscape of girls’ education characterized by difference of missions, ideals, teaching medium and urban development; the ideals of femininity and domesticity embedded in the colonial education policies, missionary initiatives and Chinese social practices; the politics underlying the establishment and growth of girls’ schools; and schooling experience of women growing up in the 1920s to 1940s. I shall argue in the thesis that from the evangelical vision of European missionaries, the civilising mission of colonial officials and philanthropists, to the nationalist appeal of Chinese intellectuals and gentry reformers, girls’ education had been a site around which shifting ideals of femininity were constructed, regulated and contested. By placing women and girls – missionary teachers, Eurasian orphans, middle and upper class schoolgirls, the unschooled servant girls, the university students – as the focus of inquiry and the agent of narrative, this thesis involves more than appending hidden accounts of girls and women to extant narratives. It critically confronts the politics of existing histories, calls for new discussions on the multi-faceted politics of colonial education and the role of schooling in constructing masculinities and femininities in colonial Hong Kong.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available