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European Universities from the Enlightenment to 1914$
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R. D. Anderson

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9780198206606

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206606.001.0001

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Enrolments and Social Patterns

Enrolments and Social Patterns

(p.119) 8 Enrolments and Social Patterns
European Universities from the Enlightenment to 1914

R. D. Anderson

Oxford University Press

This chapter summarizes work done on the social history of universities in the 1960s and 1970s, by scholars including Fritz Ringer, Christophe Charle, and Detlef Mëller. University enrolments stagnated for a time after 1815, but expanded later, driven by the growth of the professions, especially law and medicine. Contemporaries attributed social tensions in 1848 to the ‘over-production’ of educated men. Expansion was especially rapid between 1870 and 1914. The chapter summarizes the data on enrolments for various countries, and the more patchy information about the social origins of students. One trend after 1870 was that universities became popular with business as well as professional groups within the bourgeoisie, but there was also a significant influx of students from the lower middle class, notably in Germany. Similar trends can be seen in France, England, and Scotland, and they caused further social tension as the established classes felt their position threatened.

Keywords:   university history, Fritz Ringer, Christophe Charle, Detlef Müller, students, lower middle class

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