Struggling for girls’ education: coalition strategies of Norwegian and German women’s rights activists in comparative-historical perspective
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionPaedagogica Historica: International Journal of the History of Education. 2022. 10.1080/00309230.2022.2116290
This paper explores how girls’ education developed in Norway and Prussia (and later North Rhine-Westphalia, NRW) during the first and second wave of women’s political mobilisation. It analyses how organisations and activists of the women’s movement were included in different cross-interest coalitions in education politics. The cases are interpreted in light of Rokkanian cleavage theory. In Germany, the women’s movement was split along class lines but also along denominational lines. The Catholic women’s movement became a part of the Catholic and later the Christian democratic political alliance. In Norway, influential sections of the women’s movement were linked first to the liberal movement and later to the social democratic movement. In both cases, women’s rights activists left a mark on education policy, but Norwegian women’s rights activists enjoyed successes earlier and more consistently. This is a result of the Norwegian women’s movement’s comparatively greater unity and related to the different cleavage structures.