In this article, we examine and compare historical changes in girls’ home-based education in nineteenth-century Germany and China. In many ways, girls’ home-based education in these two historical contexts exhibited differences, including the relationship between formal schooling and home education, and the role that new genres played in shifting tradition and structuring girlhood. However, we argue that more commonalities between the German and Chinese cases emerge. By analyzing the relation between talent and virtue, the writing of exemplary lives, and family dynamics, we see that in both cases the home was the critical site for valorizing and reproducing the class-bounded ideology of domesticity and identification for girls as home-based education constituted the means by which knowledge, morality, and practical skills were produced and transmitted from generation to generation.
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- Girls’ home-based education
- ideology of domesticity