CfP: Exploring Workers’ Education: institutions and practices (session at the III ELHN Conference)

Call for Papers, deadline 24 September 2018

Call for papers for the 3rd Conference of the European Labour History Network, 19-21 September 2019, Amsterdam

Exploring Workers’ Education: institutions and practices

 With few exceptions, working class education has been organized and practiced in most countries across the globe. The structure and purpose of it has differed between national contexts: workers’ education has emphasized the cultivation and “enlightenment” of the working class; it has aimed to compensate for the low formal education among workers, and thus, enabled upward class mobility; it has served as a vehicle for the ideological schooling of the working class; and it has been used to facilitate civic education and work as “schools in citizenship”.

This working group invites papers on various aspects of workers’ education, in different countries, and from different theoretical perspectives. Papers can for instance address implications of workers’ education either for the individual worker or for members of trade unions or political parties, they can explore the scope of workers’ education in different countries, or analyze what was taught in these educations. We welcome contributions from various academic disciplines, case studies as well as comparative studies.

We would especially like to encourage papers that focus on different aspects of institutions organizing workers’ education, such as workers’ educational associations, labor colleges, libraries, workers’ institutes etc. Papers could explore questions such as: How were workers’ education institutions constituted and managed? What role did labor movement organizations (trade unions, political parties) play for these educational settings? What relationship did these institutions have to the state, the church or to other educational institutions (for instance universities)? How were they funded?

If you are interested, please send an abstract (no longer than 350 words) to Jenny Jansson ( and Jonas Söderqvist (, Uppsala University. Deadline 24 September, 2018