Redefining the beginnings of social work in Australia

McMahon, Anthony (2003) Redefining the beginnings of social work in Australia. Advances in Social Work and Welfare Education, 5 (1). pp. 86-94.

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Abstract

Australian social work lacks a reading of its history that places it within the social reforms and movements of the 19th and early 20th centuries, unlike histories of American and British social work. The effect of this has been to ignore social activists, particularly women who pre-date professional social work and religious women, in the few social welfare histories written about Australia.

This paper sets out the parameters for a (re)reading of 19th and early 20th century Australian social welfare activism as proto-social work practice. The paper challenges the generally conservative interpretation of the beginnings of social work in Australia and places Australian social work within Australian social history rather than within imperial narratives of colonisation.

Item ID: 1684
Item Type: Article (Refereed Research - C1)
Keywords: social work, history, Australia
Additional Information:

An earlier version of this paper was presented at Australian Association of Social Work and Welfare Education Conference, Perth, Western Australia, 29 September-2 October 2002.

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ISSN: 1329-0584
Date Deposited: 12 Sep 2007
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services @ 100%
16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1607 Social Work > 160702 Counselling, Welfare and Community Services @ 0%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9405 Work and Institutional Development > 940502 Professions and Professionalisation @ 100%
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