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The instructive power of the fable in New Zealand’s Native School Reader (1886)

The instructive power of the fable in New Zealand’s Native School Reader (1886) PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to examine the cultural implications of James Henry Pope’s selection of fables for his 1886 Native School Reader designed to teach English to Māori students in Native Schools.Design/methodology/approachThe essay takes a historical approach. It surveys attitudes towards the fable as a pedagogical tool prior to 1880 and reviews Pope’s choice of 50 from the 300 available fables in the Aesopic canon.FindingsThe study finds that Pope was well informed and well intentioned, but nonetheless appeared to be unaware of potentially unsettling interpretations of his selected fables.Originality/valueWhile it may be relatively easy for twenty-first-century readers to perceive the cultural tensions of Pope’s work, exploring the historical context helps us to understand both why Pope compiled the text he did, and why he and his books were well regarded by both Pākehā and Māori, despite almost certainly not conveying the values the settlers wished to inculcate in Māori. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png History of Education Review Emerald Publishing

The instructive power of the fable in New Zealand’s Native School Reader (1886)

History of Education Review , Volume 46 (1): 9 – Jun 5, 2017

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © Emerald Group Publishing Limited
ISSN
0819-8691
DOI
10.1108/HER-11-2014-0043
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to examine the cultural implications of James Henry Pope’s selection of fables for his 1886 Native School Reader designed to teach English to Māori students in Native Schools.Design/methodology/approachThe essay takes a historical approach. It surveys attitudes towards the fable as a pedagogical tool prior to 1880 and reviews Pope’s choice of 50 from the 300 available fables in the Aesopic canon.FindingsThe study finds that Pope was well informed and well intentioned, but nonetheless appeared to be unaware of potentially unsettling interpretations of his selected fables.Originality/valueWhile it may be relatively easy for twenty-first-century readers to perceive the cultural tensions of Pope’s work, exploring the historical context helps us to understand both why Pope compiled the text he did, and why he and his books were well regarded by both Pākehā and Māori, despite almost certainly not conveying the values the settlers wished to inculcate in Māori.

Journal

History of Education ReviewEmerald Publishing

Published: Jun 5, 2017

References