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Journal Article

Scouting for Girls: A Century of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts

About: This article is published in The American Historical Review.The article was published on 2010-01-01 and is currently open access. It has received 33 citations till now. The article focuses on the topics: Girl.
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Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: In this paper, the changing nature of girlhood over the last century is depicted through an empirical study of all editions of all Girl Guide handbooks since 1910, and the importance of incorporating children and childhood into more general theories of social change, in order to better understand how they are intrinsic to the mechanisms of intergenerational change.
Abstract: This article discusses the changing nature of girlhood over the last century as it is depicted through an empirical study of all editions of Girl Guide handbooks since 1910. The article describes three strands of change, which we describe as ‘stringy’, insofar as they are co-occur together and are difficult to untangle from one another; yet they are also stories of change that are nevertheless visible as strands in and of themselves through the empirical material. We illustrate the importance of incorporating children and childhood into more general theories of social change, in order to better understand how they are intrinsic to the mechanisms of intergenerational change.

9 citations


Cites background from "Scouting for Girls: A Century of Gi..."

  • ...So, at the first Boy Scout rally in 1909, a group of girls calling themselves ‘Girl Scouts’ also attended; they are said to have been ‘attempting to claim for themselves a part in the scout movement’ (Proctor, 2009, p. 1)....

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  • ...Anxieties about the expression of femininity were therefore formative in the incipient movement and have continued, albeit in different forms, across its history (Proctor, 2009; Swetnam, 2016) – a theme to which we will return....

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  • ...Although devised exclusively for boys (in line with dominant gender politics that did not envision future female empiric leaders), the Scouts appealed to children of both sexes (Proctor, 2009)....

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  • ...When Guiding has been explored, studies have tended to focus on it as a particular kind of youth movement (Block & Proctor, 2009; Miller, 2007; Proctor, 1998, 2002), which is set in specific historical time periods (e.g. Gillis, 1974; Gledhill, 2013; Kerr, 1954; Liddell, 1970; Wilkinson, 1969),…...

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  • ...…geopolitics of imperialism in Guiding have been explored (Gagen, 2004; MacLeod, 1983; Mechling, 2001; Miller, 2007; Mills, 2009; Parsons, 2004; Proctor, 2009), as has the role that Guiding has played as a site of citizenship-training (Cupers, 2008; Matless, 1995, 1997; Wittemans, 2009) with a…...

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Book ChapterDOI
01 Jan 2014
TL;DR: Boy Scouts have been fundamental to the Scouting and Girl Guiding programmes since Robert Baden-Powell first trialled his ‘school of the woods’, as he later described Scouting (1930, p.74) at an ‘experimental Boy Scout camp’ in 1907 as discussed by the authors.
Abstract: Camping has been fundamental to the Scouting and Girl Guiding programmes since Robert Baden-Powell first trialled his ‘school of the woods’, as he later described Scouting (1930, p.74) at an ‘experimental Boy Scout camp’ in 1907 (Springhall, 1977, p.61). Boys from differing social backgrounds were brought together on Brownsea Island off England’s south coast and organised into small semi self-governing groups or ‘patrols’, spending their days performing what became identifiably ‘Scouting’ practices: building shelters from natural materials, playing tracking games and gathering around the campfire (Jeal, 2001, p.385). This camp was deemed so successful that the following year Scouting was introduced to British children via the ultimate adventure handbook Scouting for Boys (1908). Girl Guiding was a response to girls’ demands to participate in the open-air activities their male peers were enjoying. Steered by Scouting’s handbook, and wearing makeshift uniforms, girls were already forming patrols and embarking on expeditions before Guiding was officially established in 1910 (Proctor, 2009, pp.4–5).

8 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: Though the state assumed vastly expanded health and welfare responsibilities after the war, the continuing vitality of the VAS suggests cultural continuities that the post-war welfare state did not eradicate.
Abstract: First aid was the focus of growing voluntary activity in the post-war decades. Despite the advent of the National Health Service in 1948, increased numbers of people volunteered to learn, teach, and administer first aid as concern about health and safety infiltrated new activities and arenas. In this article we use the example of the Voluntary Aid Societies (VAS, focusing in particular on St John Ambulance) to highlight continuities and change in the relationship between state and voluntary sector in health and welfare provision during the four decades after 1945. Though the state assumed vastly expanded health and welfare responsibilities after the war, the continuing vitality of the VAS suggests cultural continuities that the post-war welfare state did not eradicate. The article therefore builds on the insights of historians who argue that volunteering remained a vital component of British society across the later twentieth century, and that the state and voluntary sector were not mutually exclusive.

7 citations

01 Jan 2012
TL;DR: A comparative study of Girl Guiding in Malaya, India, Nigeria, and Australia examines the dynamics of engagement between Western and non-western women participants as mentioned in this paper, finding that the foundational ideology of Guiding, maternalism, became a common language that participants used to work toward different ideas and practices of civic belonging initially as members of the British Empire and later as independent nations.
Abstract: This comparative study of Girl Guiding in Malaya, India, Nigeria, and Australia examines the dynamics of engagement between Western and non-Western women participants. Originally a program to promote feminine citizenship only to British girls, Guiding became tied up with efforts to maintain, transform, or build different kinds of imagined communities—imperial states, nationalists movements, and independent nation states. From the program’s origins in London in 1909 until 1960 the relationship of the metropole and colonies resembled a complex web of influence, adaptation, and agency. The interactions between Girl Guide officialdom headquartered in London, Guide leaders of colonized girls, and the colonized girls who joined suggest that the foundational ideology of Guiding, maternalism, became a common language that participants used to work toward different ideas and practices of civic belonging initially as members of the British Empire and later as members of independent nations. INDEX WORDS: Girl Guides, Scouting, missionaries, Girl Scouts, imperialism, maternalism, decolonization, nationalism “WHITE, BLACK, AND DUSKY”: GIRL GUIDING IN MALAYA, NIGERIA, INDIA, AND AUSTRALIA FROM 1909-1960

7 citations