'Thring is one of those historical figures who has been deeply influential but has now been largely forgotten, outside the rather small world of the public school historians. His notion of using a broad syllabus to find the particular talent of the particular child has echoes in today’s thinking, for example. This book traces, with a scholarly and diligent eye, his impact on future generations. … I would even go so far as to say that serving school head teachers could learn a lot from this book.' David Turner, author, The Old Boys: The Decline and Rise of the Public School.
'This magnificent book needs to be in the reference section of all university libraries. … It is truly a publication of great significance. … Historians will find it illuminating and social scientists need to be aware of the research methodology.' Robert Chappell, Fellow of Brunel University, in Physical Education Matters.
'Thring, his legacy, his influence and his transformation of Uppingham School were all but pushed down my throat as sacred creeds during my time at Uppingham. His statue and portraits and name seemed to be everywhere. Malcolm Tozer shows us why. The man truly was as remarkable as Uppingham myth made him out to be. Edward Thring was one of those tireless and extraordinary reforming Victorians with an indomitable will, unquestioning sense of destiny and remarkable powers of persuasion. This marvellous book shows how they were combined with a genuinely pastoral sense of how education could benefit 'the whole boy' and thence the whole of society.' Stephen Fry.
'Anyone interested in educational ideas and in the history of education will enjoy the book. … It is wonderfully researched, with detailed information on his resources, so that the reader follows a history of the theme of manliness through two centuries of schooling involving an analysis of the history of games, Christian worship and the influence of the Empire as it then was.' Ian Beer, former Head Master of Harrow School, in ASCL Associates News.
'In what can be ascribed as a seminal text ... Malcolm Tozer has drawn from an extensive literature review of primary and secondary sources and in-depth research. ... The book is worthy of “classic” status. Its scope and detail will have resonance for both specialists in the field as well as generalists.' Professor Ken Hardman, University of Worcester, in The International Journal of Physical Education.
'The Ideal of Manliness … is a really splendid achievement; the expansion of a study of Thring to the wider scene is so well handled as are the deft, subtle but very significant category distinctions in public school theory and practice. I enjoyed it immensely (read at one go over a weekend).’ Professor Christopher Tyerman, University of Oxford, author, A History of Harrow School 1324-1991.
'Thring was years ahead in his educational thinking and pastoral work which benefitted not just Uppingham but the whole of the education sector ……….. Malcolm Tozer is to be congratulated on what is obviously a lifetime’s work on his part and he can rest assured that he has done the man and the subject justice.' Paul Jackson, editor, in Prep School.
'The Ideal of Manliness: The Legacy of Thring's Uppingham is a well-informed, attractively written and handsomely presented study of a major nineteenth century educationalist. … Edward Thring is there on the pantheon of great imperial educationalists. Malcolm Tozer has done him proud.' Professor J. A. Mangan, University of Strathclyde, author, Athleticism in the Victorian and Edwardian Public School.
'The mission of independent schools is far more ambitious than that found in most state schools; in addition to often excellent academic education, they frequently devote a third or more of their time to holistic all-round development, including sports and the arts. Opportunities to discover and nurture whatever talents each pupil has are seen as an entitlement; they are readily available, well taught and generously resourced. This, Malcolm Tozer asserts, is the legacy of Edward Thring’s Uppingham. Music, art, gymnastics, cricket, crafts and drama flourished alongside the academic curriculum at this mid-Victorian school well before they were adopted elsewhere. What Thring termed ‘the ideal of manliness’ is the forerunner of today’s ‘wholeness’. The education of the whole man and the attention to the individual pupil are now the norm in all good schools, but it was not always so. This book traces that evolution.' Sir Anthony Seldon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham.
'The influence of Thring continues at Uppingham to this day. The basis of his approach equipped many old boys to be effective leaders of men in the First World War. Malcolm Tozer's book is an important account of how this came to be so.' Timothy Halstead, author, A School in Arms: Uppingham and the Great War, to be published in 2017.
'Malcolm Tozer’s substantial and well-contextualised study of changing values in the Victorian Public School and successor institutions … is a labour of love and a celebration, exploring the vision and the legacy of Edward Thring, headmaster of Uppingham from 1853 to 1887, one of the greatest nineteenth-century schoolmasters. … The heart of the book, and the longest section, is “True Manliness in Practice”. The adjective “true” draws attention to the possibility of false or degenerate manliness as a constant threat. … Tozer faithfully and critically documents the growing tyranny of games and the descent into militarism in late-Victorian and Edwardian public schools … Tozer’s last section carries the story forward into the twentieth century, claiming elements of Thringian manliness were revived in the work of John Royds, another visionary Uppingham Head, in the New School Movement, the Outward Bound Movement, and innovative new foundations such as J.H. Badley’s Bedales and Kurt Hahn’s Gordonstoun.' Professor Norman Vance, University of Sussex, in Paedagogica Historica.
'This important and far-ranging work … is the fruit of 40 years’ experience and an immense amount of reading and research. … (The author) deploys a wealth of original documents … and his own prose carries the reader comfortably through this substantial book. … It is easy to see why Thring is still so highly regarded.' Tom Wheare, former Headmaster of Bryanston School, in Conference & Common Room.
'This book can be warmly welcomed as a more searching appraisal of Edward Thring than any previous account. … There is an impressive depth of documentation, drawn from Thring’s diaries, as well as his better known sermons and published work. Tozer places Thring in the broadest possible frame. Detailed study of his headmastership is preceded by an analysis of the mentors past and present from whom he derived his educational ideas. The exceptionally long period of Thring’s tenure at Uppingham is studied in depth. … The most original part of Tozer’s book is his tracing of Thring’s legacy long after his lifetime into the recent past.' Professor John Tosh, University of Roehampton, in History of Education.
'The book represents an excellent contribution to our understanding of manliness in the 19th century, with particular reference to public schools, … which should be read by all serious students of the topics. The way the book provides evidence to challenge the received wisdom in a number of places is a particular strength.' Stuart Weir in Verité.
‘If Tozer’s aim in writing this book was to ensure that Thring received his dues as an educational pioneer, he has, however, fallen short of the mark. Hagiography is a self-defeating enterprise, and there are enough curious statements and omissions throughout this study to cast doubt on Tozer’s ability to present a well-rounded and fair vision of Thring. … Remarkably, Tozer also condemns the years of hyper-athleticism for encouraging homosexual practices and attributes this to decline of the mid-nineteenth-century emphasis on morality. Even laying aside the illiberal condemnation of homosexuality implicit in his remarks, it defies any common sense to suggest that there was not illicit sexual activity in the public schools before hyper-athleticism, including during Thring’s era. … He is likewise blind to or at least silent on the questions of privilege, conformity, cruelty to children and anything else that might undermine Thring or the world in which he operated. … This is a book written from inside Thring’s world. But that world has gone, and we need to understand Thring from where we now are. Tozer, alas, does not really get us there.’ Associate Professor Martin Crotty, The University of Queensland, in History of Education Review.
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The inculcation of the ideal of manliness was the central educational purpose of the mid-Victorian public schools. This study traces its evolution in the first half of the nineteenth century and describes its realisation at Uppingham School between 1853 and 1887 during the headmastership of Edward Thring.
This ideal was distorted in the late Victorian years when the athletic contribution to Thring’s holistic model became the ideal in its own right, and then wholly perverted by militaristic and imperial motives in the early years of the twentieth century.
Thring’s ideal, however, lived on in the progressive school movement and eventually found general acceptance after the Second World War. Thring’s ‘manliness’ is the forerunner of the ‘wholeness‘ ideal of schools in the new millennium.
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'This marvellous book.' Stephen Fry * 'This book traces, with a scholarly and diligent eye, (Thring's) impact on future generations.' David Turner, author, The Old Boys: The Decline and Rise of the Public School * 'Anyone interested in educational ideas and in the history of education will enjoy the book.' Ian Beer, former Head Master of Harrow School * 'This magnificent book needs to be in the reference section of all university libraries.' Robert Chappell, Honorary Fellow of Brunel University * 'This book is worthy of "classic" status.' Professor Ken Hardman, University of Worcester * 'I enjoyed it immensely (read at one go over a weekend).' Professor Christopher Tyerman, University of Oxford * 'Malcolm Tozer has done Thring proud.' Professor J A Mangan, author, Athleticism in the Victorian and Edwardian Public School * 'Malcolm Tozer is to be congratulated on what is obviously a lifetime's work.' Paul Jackson, Prep School * 'The education of the whole man and the attention to the individual pupil are now the norm in all good schools, but it was not always so. This book traces that evolution.' * Sir Anthony Seldon, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Buckingham * 'It is easy to see why Thring is still so highly regarded.' Tom Wheare, former Headmaster of Bryanston School * 'This book can be warmly welcomed as a more searching appraisal of Edward Thring than any previous account.' Professor John Tosh, University of Roehampton * 'Malcolm Tozer’s substantial and well-contextualised study of changing values in the Victorian Public School and successor institutions … is a labour of love and a celebration.' Professor Norman Vance, University of Sussex * 'An excellent contribution to the literature on muscular Christianity and manliness.' J Stuart Weir, Verité * 'If Tozer’s aim in writing this book was to ensure that Thring received his dues as an educational pioneer, he has, however, fallen short of the mark.' Associate Professor Martin Crotty, The University of Queensland.
523 pages, illustrations, bibliography, index - hardback, paperback and electronic editions;
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