• Mary O’Dowd
  • June Purvis


The introduction synthesises the key themes of the volume and suggests that a comparative approach to the history of the girl reveals many similarities over time and place. These similarities include ambiguity about when adolescent girlhood ends and womanhood begins; anxiety around the education of girls, particularly at a high academic level; and the central role of the work of girls in the global economy from the eighteenth through to the early years of the twenty-first century. These issues continue to be at the centre of public discourse on the girl in contemporary society. A historical dimension has, therefore, much to offer the wider field of Girls’ Studies.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mary O’Dowd
    • 1
  • June Purvis
    • 2
  1. 1.School of History, Anthropology, Philosophy and PoliticsQueen’s University BelfastBelfastUK
  2. 2.School of Social Historical and Literary StudiesUniversity of PortsmouthPortsmouthUK

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