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Monica Reichenberg

Abstract

In educational systems without comprehensive systems for regulating textbooks, teachers can exert considerable influence on the use of textbooks. However, existing research has not yet identified the mechanisms of this use. Accordingly, the aim of this article is to examine and explain teachers’ strategic use of textbooks. I administered a questionnaire to 313 Swedish teachers of years four to twelve (for pupils of ten to eighteen years of age). The results demonstrate a pathway between reading practices and strategic textbook use, mediated by textbook satisfaction. Pupils’ reading needs had a negative impact on strategic textbook use. Finally, teachers’ experience had a positive impact on reading practices but no effect on strategic textbook use.

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Narrating the Second World War

History Textbooks and Nation Building in Belarus, Russia, and Ukraine

Lina Klymenko

Abstract

This article explores the theoretical understanding of the relation between school history textbooks and the state-led construction of national identity. It does this by conceptualizing a history textbook as an assembly of historical narratives that provide young readers with an opportunity to identify with the national community in which they live. By focusing on narrative techniques, including plot, concepts of time and space, and the categorization of characters as in- and out-groups, this article shows how narratives of the Second World War in Belarusian, Russian, and Ukrainian textbooks contribute to nation-building.

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Negotiating the Nation in History

The Swedish State Approval Scheme for Textbooks and Teaching Aids from 1945 to 1983

Henrik Åström Elmersjö

Abstract

This article explores the discussions concerning history textbooks that occurred within the Swedish State Approval Scheme for Textbooks (Statens läroboksnämnd) from 1945 to 1983. By focusing on the negotiation of nationhood and the process of textbook approval as an arena for the renegotiation of ways in which history was taught in schools, the article reveals that nationalistic sentiment associated with the historical discipline was challenged by intercultural and materialist discourses during the period under examination. However, much of the debate within the State Approval Scheme for Textbooks indicates that an ethnic nationalist discourse and competing discourses introduced in new syllabi for history education after 1945 tended to converge.

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Spatial Relations and the Struggle for Space

Friedrich Ratzel’s Impact on German Education from the Wilhelmine Empire to the Third Reich

Troy Paddock

Abstract

This article examines the influence of Friedrich Ratzel’s idea of the struggle for space and its impact on cultural and national development depicted in German geography and history textbooks from the Wilhelmine era to the Third Reich. Ratzel’s concept of bio-geography conceived the state as a living organism that is the product of humanity’s interaction with the land and also facilitates humanity’s spread across the earth. German textbooks promoted a similar concept of the state in their portrayal of geography and history, the implications of which were appropriated by the National Socialists to support their geopolitical goals.

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Jingyi Li

Abstract

This article examines the cultural values conveyed via texts and illustrations in EFL (English as a foreign language) textbooks currently in use in China. The large number of cultural values represented include patriotism, respect, diligence, collectivism, and equitable gender roles. These show that the national curriculum has been implemented in EFL textbooks. At the same time, the “common sense” design of textbooks also reflects textbook editors’ and writers’ cultural values.

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Working with the Cold War

Types of Knowledge in Swedish and Australian History Textbook Activities

Niklas Ammert and Heather Sharp

Abstract

This article presents a comparative analysis of pupils’ activities dealing with the Cold War in Swedish and Australian history textbooks. By focusing on textbook activities to which pupils respond in relation to their learning of a particular topic, this study identifies knowledge types included in a selection of history textbooks. The study also focuses on the question whether, and if so how, social values are evident in activities concerning the Cold War. The authors develop a matrix that makes it possible to examine knowledge types and social values conveyed by activities. By analyzing textbook activities, this article exposes the hidden curriculum present in the textbooks on the basis of underlying and unstated values present in the activities, and at the same time identifies the way in which the selected textbooks incorporate these values.

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Writing Childhoods, Righting Memory

Intergenerational Remembrance in Post-communist Romania

Codruta Alina Pohrib

Abstract

This article traces different appropriations of intergenerational memory in post-communist Romania in three non-formal educational texts: the pop-up book The Golden Age for Children; Ȋn faţa blocului (Outside the apartment building), a collection of outdoor games that defined the generations of the 1970s and 1980s; and Elev în Comunism (Students during the communist regime), which comprises first person narratives by teenagers imagining their lives as pupils under communism. I flesh out the stakes involved in correcting, repurposing, or capitalizing on nostalgic remembrances of the communist past, which are or may be passed on to children by their parents who grew up under communism, paying close attention to expectations from and pressures on the family as a privileged site of memory transmission.

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Educational Film Studies

A Burgeoning Field of Research

Anne Bruch

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Eulalia Guzmán and Walt Disney’s Educational Films

A Pedagogical Proposal for “Literacy for the Americas” in Mexico (1942–1944)

María Rosa Gudiño Cejudo

Translator : Stephen Torgoff

Abstract

Literacy for the Americas was an audiovisual educational program implemented in Mexico and other Latin American countries in the early 1940s by the Office of Inter-American Affairs (OIAA). Walt Disney Studios made four short films that were designed to teach illiterate residents of Latin Americahow to read and write. In Mexico, this project was initially backed by the Secretariat of Public Education (SEP) under Jaime Torres Bodet, who appointed Eulalia Guzmán to be the SEP’s representative and thus to support the program. Walt Disney asked her to work out a pedagogical proposal for the educational films. This article analyzes the proposal, the development and production of these shorts, and their reception in Mexico. It foregrounds Guzmán’s criticisms of these educational materials, which led the OIAA representatives to withdraw them from circulation.

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The German Colonies in Die Weltgeschichte als Kolonialgeschichte

The Use of Filmic Techniques in Colonial Revisionism in the 1920s

Michael Annegarn-Gläß

Translator : Katherine Ebisch-Burton

Abstract

Academic history has begun only relatively recently to study films as historical sources, and thus far it has focused principally on feature films to the exclusion of nonfictional cinema, despite the use of educational films for propaganda as early as the interwar period. This essay examines the extent to which educational films of this period employed a range of techniques to reach their viewers and encouraged them to take the film’s argumentation on board. Categorizing these techniques as either narrative strategies or visual effects, we contextualize their use by taking the film Die Weltgeschichte als Kolonialgeschichte (“World History as Colonial History,” 1926) as an example.