Fall / automne 2011

British Teachers in Canada After Both World Wars: “Imbued with the spirit of Empire”?

Kay Whitehead
Published November 2, 2011
  • Progressive education,
  • British teachers,
  • transnational history,
  • British Empire,
  • New Canadians,
  • gender inequality
  • ...More
How to Cite
Whitehead, Kay. 2011. “British Teachers in Canada After Both World Wars: ‘Imbued With the Spirit of Empire’?”. Historical Studies in Education / Revue d’histoire De l’éducation 23 (2). https://doi.org/10.32316/hse/rhe.v23i2.3198.


Using a transnational framework, this paper explores five British teachers’ perspectives of Canadian people and education in the years following both World Wars. These teachers came to Canada for various reasons and periods of time. Although they spoke from diverse social locations, they found much that they could identify as British in Canada. Notwithstanding the presence of “New Canadians” and persistent gender inequalities in the teaching workforce, Canada was conceptualized as a “land of opportunity” and loyal to the British Empire. However, the British teachers were ambivalent about the extent to which progressive curriculum and teaching practices had mediated the “system of marks and exams” which characterized Canadian education.