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A history of aesthetic education in the visual arts from 1872 to 1945 in British Columbia Miller, Michael Douglas


The search for the, presence of aesthetic education in the visual arts and its connection to history in the formative part of British Columbia's development, up to 1945, was the intent of this study. I propose that aesthetic education has been present in the public schools of British Columbia through most of the time span of this study. The time span 1872 to 1945 was chosen as a logical time frame for the study; the inception of the public school system to its total reorganization, both physically and financially, following the Cameron report (1945). A thorough review of the documents written by the Department of Education; Annual Reports of the Public Schools, Curricula for Public Schools, Programmes of Studies, and surveys were all read for traces, snippets, innuendos, and allusions to, the subject of this study. Loral and general histories as well as histories of education were read in search of connecting webs of commonality. International and intercontinental "movements" in the visual arts were examined to see any connection with the development of aesthetic education in the visual arts in British Columbia. The unstable economy of British Columbia, based as it is on primary resource extraction and international markets, has had Its effect on the development of British Columbia and its public schools. Being a geographically convoluted region with isolated pockets of population, ease of transportation between points in British Columbia has also shown its influence on the educational system. The Department of Education was aware of international movements in aesthetic education in the visual arts, but the finances of the Individual 649 active school districts varied from a few wealthy city districts to hundreds of impoverished rural districts. The type of teacher training also played a major part in the growth of aesthetic education. On paper then it seemed as though the pupils of British Columbia's Public Schools were receiving a contemporary aesthetic education, but in fact this idea was only a dream in many areas of British Columbia.

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