History, nation and school inspections: the introduction of citizenship education in elementary schools in late nineteenth-century Sweden

Jakob Evertsson

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It was in the late nineteenth century that teaching in Sweden’s elementaryschools began its transformation from a religious education to a broader, nationalcitizenship education that included history and geography. International researchhas pointed to a connection between the introduction of school inspections andthe reform of public education during this period. In Sweden, however, the practiceof inspection has not been explored at any length. This article therefore considersthe part played by school inspections in the implementation of a moreextensive curriculum in Swedish elementary schools in the period 1860–1900,with a particular focus on the subject of history, using a study of inspectionreports from the diocese of Uppsala. It is argued that school inspectors had a keyrole in initiating reform at the local level, but also that the move towardsbroader-based citizenship education was not a simple, straightforward process.
Sidor (från-till)259–273
TidskriftHistory of Education
StatusPublicerad - 2015
MoE-publikationstypA1 Tidskriftsartikel-refererad


  • citizenship education
  • School inspections
  • History teaching
  • Educational reform
  • School curriculum

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