Published on Brock University (http://www.brocku.ca)
Researching the life and work of Eliza Fenwick
Lissa Paul, PhD
Department of Undergraduate and Graduate Studies in Education
Professor, Brock University Faculty of Education
Professor Lissa Paul was awarded a three-year SSHRC grant in the amount of $60,860 for Eliza Fenwick: An Eighteenth-Century Life for the Twenty-First Century. Fenwick (1767-1840) was one of a group of extraordinary women writing for children and adults in the radical London of the late Enlightenment. Although they rarely receive much recognition now, these women had worked out the kinds of progressive pedagogies typically credited to men (Vygotsky, Dewey) writing a century later.
Professor Paul’s starter book on Fenwick, The Children’s Book Business: Lessons from the Long Eighteenth Century, recently published by Routledge, deals with some of those progressive pedagogical practices. But it was interest in Fenwick’s ability to put theory into practice that initially prompted Paul’s research. After leaving London, Fenwick started schools, first in Bridgetown Barbados and later in New Haven, Connecticut and in what is now Niagara-on-the-Lark. Research during Professor Paul’s 2007-2011 SSHRC grant led her to the discovery of an unreferenced, apparently unknown cache of letters Fenwick and her granddaughter had written from Niagara and Toronto to friends in New York. With the mandate provided by the new grant, Professor Paul plans to research the life and work of Eliza Fenwick, and is planning to write a biography.
View Professor Paul’s Profile HERE.