Chapter 8 Politics, Catechisms and Democracy

Political Strife, Popular Power and Enlightenment in Norway 1814–1840

In: Exploring Textbooks and Cultural Change in Nordic Education 1536–2020

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Abstract

This chapter aims to investigate the early attempts at civic education in the period after the introduction of the Norwegian constitution of 1814. In these first decades of the nineteenth century, the education system lacked any ambitions of providing a political literacy to the children. Instead, one finds that political catechisms introduced political literacy into a newfound political public sphere, aimed at the adult population. In this field, one experiences a popular movement searching after political influence. The authorities had a more limited role in this period and did not manage to exercise their control of the public schools and its curriculum.

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