October 1, 2004
How to Cite
Ambrose, Linda M. 2004. “‘BETTER AND HAPPIER MEN AND WOMEN’: THE AGRICULTURAL INSTRUCTION ACT, 1913-1924”. Historical Studies in Education / Revue d’histoire De l’éducation 16 (2), 257-85. https://doi.org/10.32316/hse/rhe.v16i2.333.
In 1913, the Canadian government introduced The Agricultural Instruction
Act, a measure which granted ten million dollars to the provinces over ten years
to aid agriculture. The Conservatives predicted that the Act would help in
“aiding and advancing the farming industry by instruction in agriculture” but this
paper argues that, ironically, the funding actually served to heighten rural
discontent, not assuage it. By examining public documents and the rural press,
the paper explores the rationale, rhetoric, and politics of this initiative. The
funding designated for women’s groups is closely examined to determine its
impact on the growth of groups like the Women’s Institutes.