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The Global Challenge of Peace1919 as a Contested Threshold to a New World Order$
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Matt Perry

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9781800857193

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2022

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781800857193.001.0001

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Educating the Peace

Educating the Peace

Adult Education Responses to 1919

(p.217) 12 Educating the Peace
The Global Challenge of Peace

Jude Murphy

Nigel Todd

Liverpool University Press

This chapter will examine how 1919 transformed British adult education, being rooted in a dialogue between the trenches and domestic politics, prompting a movement for widening access to education. Framed within a Wilsonian view of a more democratic and peaceful world, the immediate post-war context generated opportunities for adult education initiatives. Firstly, the cooperative movement created the Co-operative College in a move that had been a longstanding goal. Secondly, the London County Council established City Lit targeting amongst others disabled veterans on their courses. Thirdly, women’s movement activists built on greater female participation in the public sphere, illustrated by the admission of women students to Ruskin College. Fourthly, the encyclopaedic ‘1919 Report’ of the Ministry of Reconstruction, triggered the first generation of 'mature students' with 33,688 ex-soldiers grant aided to attend Higher Education between 1920-23. This generation revived campus students’ societies, especially those that promoted the League of Nations, and formed the National Union of Students to rebuild international peace. The chapter will also examine how the transition between war and peace and the intellectual climate also transformed existing adult education organisations, scrutinizing the radicalisation of the Workers’ Educational Association.

Keywords:   Workers’ Educational Association, Veterans, Demobilisation, Central Labour College, Cooperative Movement, Ruskin College, Reconstruction

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