The introduction establishes the book’s historiographical and methodological contours. In doing so, the introduction sets the study in the context of both debates about British national identity in general and popular imperialism in particular. It also explains the topicality of the book by demonstrating how, in near-contemporary debates about the politics of national curriculum history teaching, some invoke a ‘golden age’ of past practice to justify alterations to the curriculum. Through use of the concept of cultural restorationism, I argue that a deeper understanding of the relationship between educational psychology and the development of history teaching is necessary; especially so since the political construction of a golden age has led to misleading depictions of the history of history teaching.
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