This lecture will focus on the life and work of leading educational reformist Caroline Benn (1926-2000).
Wife of one of the most prominent postwar socialists in Britain, Caroline made an immense contribution to British public life through her work in educational politics and as one of the leaders of the Comprehensive Education Movement in the second half of the twentieth century.
Reconstructing the story of Caroline’s life and the historical landscape in which that life was lived through the use of oral history and archive and documentary analysis, the lecture offers a fresh reappraisal of a critical period in education politics and policy-making. It draws attention to the significance of Caroline’s role as school governor at Holland Park Comprehensive School in the London borough of Kensington and Chelsea in the 1960s and 1970s to counter the demonization of comprehensive schooling – a cause that Caroline supported all her life.
It will be argued that Caroline was a very important propagandist and scholar, whose tenacious campaigning brought the educational causes she championed into the general culture.
Dates & times
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