What Michael Gove's compulsory curriculum would teach you about William Wilberforce
- Building R19, Room 139, School of Education
- Research, Social Sciences, Students
DOMUS Seminar Series 2012-2013
With speaker Nathaniel Adam Tobias Coleman, Visiting Research Fellow in the Wilberforce Institute for the study of Slavery and Emancipation (WISE) and in the Institute of Applied Ethics (IAE), at the University of Hull.
One commentator on Michael Gove's 'Review of the National Curriculum' has concluded that 'Gove would rather [the] anti-slavery 'campaigner' William Wilberforce were written out of history'. I argue against this conclusion. A closer attention to Gove's moralised position on Wilberforce, to Wilberforce's surprisingly marital moral argument against the 'degradation' of Negro Slavery, and to Gove's position on cross-racial adoptability, suggests otherwise. Thus, in our teaching of what the current compulsory curriculum calls 'the nature and effects of the slave trade', Gove (were he consistent) would have us include William Wilberforce - but not, perhaps, in the way you (or he) might expect.