Citizenship for the Common Good: The Contributions of Mary Ritter Beard (1876-1958)

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 2006





Publication Title

International Journal of Social Education


Part of a special issue on social studies currere. Mary Ritter Beard, a well-known figure among women historians, has recently been considered within the context of social studies education. Although she played no direct role in the structural development of social studies as a field, more than anyone else of her generation, Mary Beard worked to bring women's history to American classrooms. She wrote and spoke extensively on the related topics of democracy, citizenship, and education; she developed a vision of civic agency that placed women of all classes at the center of community and national life, offering a woman-centered lens that makes her contribution to social education significant; and her arguments go far in helping social studies educators to consider, in new ways, the familiar terms democracy and citizenship.

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