06 September 2011
Dr Annie Tindley
Professor John William Stewart
Department of Social Sciences, Media and Journalism, Glasgow Caledonian University
‘The Dangerous Age of Childhood’: Child Guidance in Britain, 1920–1955
The project describes and analyses the development of child guidance, a form of psychiatric preventive medicine for ‘maladjusted’ children, from its origins in the 1920s through to its embedding in the post-war welfare state. Child guidance was carried out
through specialist clinics where the child ‘patient’ – referred for conditions ranging from ‘timidity’ to bed-wetting – would encounter representatives of three professions: psychiatry, psychology, and psychiatric social work. As one psychiatrist put it, the aim of child guidance was to help both children and their parents navigate the ‘dangerous age of childhood’. It is further argued that the concepts behind child guidance, such as what constituted ‘maladjustment’ and the importance of the parent/child relationship, had much wider social and cultural resonances which were diffused through the medium of, for example, popular magazines aimed at concerned mothers. Overall, child guidance was crucial in shaping twentieth-century ideas of what constituted ‘childhood’.
The aristocratic sinews of Empire: Imperial land reform, 1840–1895
British (particularly Scottish and Irish) aristocrats dominated nineteenth-century imperial administration, filling key posts across the world and wielding considerable political, economic and social influence over millions of colonial subjects. How did their landed, aristocratic background inform their actions as imperial administrators? And how did the circumstances and events of Empire inform their attitudes towards their landed estates, particularly in addressing the vexed question of land reform? This project, intended as a scoping exercise for a long-term programme of research and eventual book, examines these questions via original archival research on a series of key case studies. These includeIndian and Canadian viceroys, Colonial and Indian secretaries of state, and the estates papers of numerous landed families in Scotland and Ireland. This award has allowed me to utilise these far-flung sources and progress towards a greater understanding of the aristocratic view of the British Empire in the nineteenth Century.