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The circulation of knowledge and practices across national borders in the early twentieth century: a focus on social reform organisations

Published on Aug 8, 2015in European Journal of Social Work
· DOI :10.1080/13691457.2014.953041
Adrienne Chambon11
Estimated H-index: 11
(U of T: University of Toronto),
Marjorie Johnstone6
Estimated H-index: 6
(U of T: University of Toronto),
Stefan Köngeter10
Estimated H-index: 10
Abstract
In this article, we focus on the emergence of ideas and practices at a local level as the result of the transnational circulation of knowledge in social reform that became shared understandings in the transatlantic world of the early twentieth century. Bringing together the theoretical frameworks of transnational history with imperialism and post-colonialism studies, we revisit the results of two research projects on the settlement house movement and on the history of a childcare agency that were established in the same period in Toronto, Canada. The West End Creche and St. Christopher House are examples of two organisations whose history can only be understood with respect to their transnational connections. Archival research reveals that the transnational activities of these organisations were immense; the imperial connections to Britain and the, often competitive, relations to the USA, were prevalent, as was social reform knowledge from continental Europe. These organisations, the outcome of local and ...
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