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Eighty years on: representations of teachers and schools in British films, from 1930 to 2010

Johnson, Nicholas (2011)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.

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Teachers are required to be reflective practitioners: that is, they must constantly assess and evaluate their performance, and its effectiveness. In addition, of course, they come under external scrutiny from government and parents. However, what of the way the public look at teachers? Teachers and schools may be read about in newspapers, comics and journals, discussed on television and the radio; they may even fall foul of social networking sites on the Internet. Popular films may be regarded as ninety-minute essays, presented dramatically for the entertainment of their audiences; the teacher or school film has been a staple of popular cinema in this country for almost eighty years.

Moreover, the representations of teachers in British films have tended to retain a continuity of message despite the many changes that have taken place in education over this period. This thesis looks at those representations, and changes in education, and attempts to make connections, backed up with a philosophical approach that seeks to explain the visual turn in terms of successive orders of simulation. My hope is that new generations of teachers may reflect on the cultural heritage of which they, and their chosen profession, are very much a part.

Type of Work:Ph.D. thesis.
Supervisor(s):Grosvenor, Ian
School/Faculty:Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
Department:School of Education
Subjects:LA History of education
PN1993 Motion Pictures
Institution:University of Birmingham
ID Code:3007
This unpublished thesis/dissertation is copyright of the author and/or third parties. The intellectual property rights of the author or third parties in respect of this work are as defined by The Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988 or as modified by any successor legislation. Any use made of information contained in this thesis/dissertation must be in accordance with that legislation and must be properly acknowledged. Further distribution or reproduction in any format is prohibited without the permission of the copyright holder.
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