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History, memory cultures and meaning in the classroom

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This article presents findings of small-scale in-depth qualitative research into the perspectives on history amongst adolescent children of minority ethnic backgrounds living in inner-cities in England. The research aimed to elicit, first, the narratives of British history that children from minority ethnic backgrounds hold; and, second, the relationship between the history children learn from home and that learned at school. In addressing these research questions, this paper contributes to wider discourses of what history should be taught in contemporary multi-ethnic settings, as well as how teachers in classrooms can navigate the tensions between history and memory cultures. Although the research was conducted in the English context, the issues it raises are pertinent elsewhere.

Keywords: history; identity; memory cultures; school history

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK 2: Graduate School of Education, University of Bristol, UK

Publication date: April 1, 2011

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