In most countries in the world, school education is the business of the state. Even if forms and functions differ, the imparting of elementary knowledge is universally regarded as a public function. Yet this is neither self-evident nor self-explanatory. The degree of involvement of state agencies in the supervision, financing and organization of the school system sometimes varies so much that the usual assumption of a common understanding of ‘the state’ seems to be an illusion.

Making international comparisons and focusing strongly on the historical conditions of the current form of state education, this volume paints a nuanced picture of how the relationship between ‘education’ and ‘state’ has been and is conceptualized. Insights into this relationship are gained by considering and analysing both specific processes such as financing and bureaucracy; and conceptual ideas, for example community, authority, and political utopias. The book presents comparative studies and analyses of regional and local conditions, arguing that the history of each country or region is critical to educational success, and the relationship between the education and the state must be reconsidered, both internationally and historically, in order to be of actual conceptual value.

Education and the State presents a broad variety of approaches and examples that provide a significant contribution to the understanding of the relationship between education and the state. It will be of key value to academics and researchers in the fields of the history of education, the politics of education, and educational administration.

part 1|14 pages


chapter 1|12 pages

Bringing education back in

International perspectives on the relationship between state, culture and society

part 2|43 pages

Comparing school systems

chapter 2|22 pages

The national state, the local and the growth of mass schooling

History lessons from England, France and the United States 1

chapter 3|19 pages

State intervention in backward countries

Some case studies of state education systems in Hispanic America (c. 1870–1920)

part 3|44 pages

Financing education

chapter 4|17 pages

The provision of education and the state

From equity to more equality

chapter 5|25 pages

State education, crisis and austerity

A historical analysis through the lens of the Kondratiev cycles

part 4|66 pages

Educational administration

chapter 6|16 pages

To write like a bureaucrat

Educational administration as a cultural phenomenon

chapter 7|17 pages

Bureaucratizing from the bottom up

The centralization of school discipline policy in the United States

chapter 8|21 pages

The state of education in the States

The US Department of Education and the evolving federal role in American school policy

chapter 9|10 pages

‘Governing by numbers'

Social work in the age of the regulatory state

part 5|89 pages

Power, myths of community and Utopia

chapter 10|7 pages

‘Among School Children'

The churches, politics and Irish schooling, 1830–1930 1

chapter 11|18 pages

Make the nation safe for mass society

Debates about propaganda and education in the United States in the twentieth century

chapter 12|23 pages

Conceptualizations of dignity and exposure in critiques of community

Implications for ethics and educational theory in the work of Plessner and Nancy

chapter 13|15 pages

‘Taking the path of least resistance'

Expulsions from Soviet schools in the Stalinist 1930s 1

chapter 14|24 pages

Utopia, state and democracy