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Idealists, Pragmatists and ‘Simple-Minded’ Scamps: The Tasmanian Mental Deficiency Board and State ‘Care’ in the 1920s

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-19, 12:57 authored by Caroline EvansCaroline Evans
This article uses case files to trace the negotiations that took place in the early 1920s between officials at the Tasmanian Children of the State Department and the Mental Deficiency Board about the training and employment as farm labourers of sixteen boys in state care who were diagnosed as ‘feeble-minded’. It explores the ways in which the boys attempted to improve their work conditions through negotiation and protest, finding that the Department supported them against the Board over the need for fair treatment and wages. Australian studies of children’s protest while in state care have concentrated on girls and do not address intellectual disability or the agency of officials. This investigation addresses that historiographical gap.

History

Publication title

Australian Historical Studies

Volume

48

Pagination

264-279

ISSN

1031-461X

Department/School

School of Humanities

Publisher

Univ Melbourne

Place of publication

Hist Dept, Parkville, Australia, Victoria, 3052

Rights statement

Copyright 2017 Taylor & Francis

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Expanding knowledge in history, heritage and archaeology

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