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Globalization and the Rise of Women’s Literacy and Primary Education in Iran, from 1880 to the Present Day

  • David MitchEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Economic History book series (PEHS)

Abstract

Iran is a striking example of a country experiencing a shift from widespread illiteracy to the onset of universal literacy in just a few decades. What is especially remarkable about the Iranian case is the persistent drive to universal female literacy, even in rural areas, during the regime change from a secularizing autocracy to an Islamic theocracy. The basic resolution of this apparent paradox is that the Islamic Revolution was perceived by its leaders as a true revolution. It was conceived not as a return to a traditional society but as a move to purify and establish Islamic morality to counteract secular, westernizing forces in Iranian society: Education was a policy lever to achieve such goals.

Keywords

Literacy Literacy Corps Literacy Movement White Revolution Islamic Revolution Nationalism Secularization 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This chapter has benefitted from outstanding research assistance provided by Sousan Torabi Parizi.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of EconomicsUniversity of MarylandBaltimore CountyUSA

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