The school as an imagined community: the political and educational response of the state to the permanent presence of ‘black’ immigrant children in the British educational system in post-1945 Britain

Osborne-Halsey, Thelma Edwina (2012). The school as an imagined community: the political and educational response of the state to the permanent presence of ‘black’ immigrant children in the British educational system in post-1945 Britain. University of Birmingham. M.Phil.

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Abstract

The recurring theme of the marginalisation of ‘black’ immigration settlers and their offspring in post-1945 Britain is set within the framework of racism and English nationalism. The term ‘black’ is used here as a descriptor for peoples from the Commonwealth countries such as the West Indies, India and Pakistan. ‘Black’ immigrants came to England as British subjects under the aegis of the British Nationality Act 1948. Studies already exist that deal with the permanent presence of ‘black’ immigrant settlers in different ways, but not within the setting of Bernard Anderson’s concept of the imagined community. My argument is structured around the process of racialisation, which was the mechanism used by the state to construct a fixed ‘black’ identity for ‘black’ immigrant settlers and their children. The aim was to exclude them from the imagined community. They are ‘outsiders’ and not included in the national identity. The national identity had the essential characteristic of whiteness. This was supported by the Anglo-Saxon myth.
The aim of this study is to provide an explanation of the experiences of ‘black’ immigrant children in the history of education in post-1945 Britain. Their marginalisation represents the position in which the state has positioned ‘black’ immigrant settlers. The structure of my argument is based on historical research and social theory. It allows for the interpretation of such concepts as ‘the imagined community’, ‘Englishness’, ‘racialisation’, ‘identity’, ‘denial’ and ‘determinism’, and the ‘biological organism’ analogy.
Second and third generations of ‘black’ immigrant settlers asserted their ‘claim to belong’ as an integral part of the wider society.

Type of Work: Thesis (Masters by Research > M.Phil.)
Award Type: Masters by Research > M.Phil.
Supervisor(s):
Supervisor(s)EmailORCID
Grosvenor, IanUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Warmington, PaulUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Licence:
College/Faculty: Colleges (2008 onwards) > College of Social Sciences
School or Department: School of Education
Funders: None/not applicable
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
J Political Science > JV Colonies and colonization. Emigration and immigration. International migration
L Education > LC Special aspects of education
URI: http://etheses.bham.ac.uk/id/eprint/3818

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