English passions: Thatcherism and schooling
This commentary on Peter Dorey’s chapter sets Thatcherism’s distinctively English education policy in two broader contexts. Cultural conservatism and the introduction of quasi-markets are features of other west European school systems. English education, post-Thatcher, is marked out as different by the extent of marketization and the persistent intensity of its cultural politics. Looked at in a British context, the same kinds of contrast can be made: the school systems of all four nations of Britain may increasingly be shaped by neo-liberal policy formulae, but it is in England that such formulae are most potent.
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