Adult Literacy for Development in India

An Analysis of Policy and Performance
  • H. S. Bhola


This study presents an analysis of the role of adult literacy in the development of India, comparing policy against performance and intention against action. A political theory of adult literacy in development provides the conceptual framework. Two general development models are identified: the motivational-developmental model (where the responsibility for development is placed on the individual who must aspire, learn, act, and achieve); and the structural-developmental model (where the state must take the initiative to change political and economic structures). What use is made of adult literacy in development in a particular country depends upon the overall development model being followed.


Prime Minister Adult Literacy Adult Education Voluntary Association Voluntary Agency 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Gunnar Myrdal, Asian Drama: An Inquiry into the Poverty of Nations (New York: Pantheon, 1968), pp. 257–303. Other quotations in this section are also from Myrdal unless otherwise stated.Google Scholar
  2. 3.
    See Joseph Di Bona, ed., The Context of Education in Indian Development (Durham, North Carolina: Duke University Press, 1974).Google Scholar
  3. For a global view of the role of education in development, see Philip H. Coombs, The World Crisis in Education: The View from the Eighties (New York: Oxford University Press, 1985).Google Scholar
  4. 6.
    Some of the other terms used to describe adult education are adult basic education, social education, fundamental education, continuing education, lifelong education, and, more recently, nonformal education. See H. S. Bhola, “Nonformal Education in Perspective,” Prospects 13(1983): 45–53.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 7.
    V.K.R.V. Rao, Adult Education and Development (New Delhi: Ministry of Education and Youth Services, 1970), p. 2.Google Scholar
  6. 8.
    H. S. Bhola, Campaigning for Literacy (Paris, UNESCO, 1984), pp. 196–199.Google Scholar
  7. 10.
    This section of the paper is heavily indebted to Sohan Singh, History of Adult Education During British Period (Delhi: Indian Adult Education Association, 1957).Google Scholar
  8. 11.
    S.N. Saraf, Literacy in a Nonliteracy Milieu: The Indian Scenario (Paris: International Institute for Educational Planning, 1980), pp. 55–70.Google Scholar
  9. 16.
    Paulo Freire, Pedagogy of the Oppressed (New York: Herder and Herder, 1970).Google Scholar
  10. See also Leon Bataille, ed., A Turning Point for Literacy: Proceedings of the International Symposium for Literacy, Persepolis, Iran, 1975 (Oxford: Pergamon Press, 1976).Google Scholar
  11. 18.
    H. S. Bhola in collaboration with Josef Müller and Piet Dijkstra, The Promise of Literacy (Baden-Baden: Nomos Verlagsgesellschaft, 1983), pp. 206–207.Google Scholar
  12. 21.
    Report of the National Seminar on Strategies for Post-Literacy, Follow-up and Continuing Education, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, September 24-30, 1982 (Hyderabad: State Resource Center, Osmania University, 1982). Also, Anil Bordia, “Plans and Management of Post-Literacy Programmes,” in G. Carron and A. Bordia, eds., Issues in Planning and Implementing National Literacy Programmes (Paris: Unesco International Institute for Educational Planning, 1985), pp. 179–197.Google Scholar
  13. 27.
    Anita Dighe, R. S. Mathur and Prem Chand, “Appraisal Studies of the Adult Education Programme: Their Implications for Policy, Planning, and Management” (New Delhi: Directorate of Adult Education, Ministry of Education and Culture, Government of India, 1981).Google Scholar
  14. 29.
    B. C. Muthayya and Hemalatha L. Prasad, “Adult Education in Rural Development: A Study of the Process of Implementation in a Block,” Journal of Rural Development, 1 (January 1982), pp. 72–113.Google Scholar
  15. 30.
    H. S. Bhola, “Literacy: Destiny of the Human Species” (paper presented to the Annual Meeting of the American Library Association [OLOS Session on Literacy], Chicago, 111., July 6-11, 1985).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1987

Authors and Affiliations

  • H. S. Bhola
    • 1
  1. 1.School of EducationIndiana UniversityBloomingtonUSA

Personalised recommendations