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The making of a liberal education: Political economy of Austrian school reform, 1865 - 1875

Cvrcek, TT; Zajicek, M; (2017) The making of a liberal education: Political economy of Austrian school reform, 1865 - 1875. (UCL Centre for Comparative Studies of Emerging Economies Working Paper Series 2017/3). UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES): London, UK. Green open access

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Abstract

The rise of mass schooling is an important contributor to modern economic growth. But its form, content, scale and manner of provision are all matters of public policy that are subject to politics. The rise of modern schooling is frequently cast as a product of broadened suffrage and stronger political voice of the masses, which overcame the political opposition from old ruling elites. We investigate this hypothesis, using the case of a school reform undertaken in Imperial Austria in 1869. We show that while landowners were less likely to vote for school modernization than urban and business interests, the strongest opposition came from the rural areas where the suffrage was in fact most numerous. The reform passed in spite of their opposition but, interestingly, post-reform developments suggest that passive resistance to it continued in the countryside in spite of the alleged benefits that education was billed to bring the masses.

Type: Working / discussion paper
Title: The making of a liberal education: Political economy of Austrian school reform, 1865 - 1875
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Keywords: mass schooling, political economy, Austria-Hungary
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > SSEES
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1546382
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