Catherine Beecher

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Catherine Beecher by Mind Map: Catherine Beecher

1. Catharine Beecher was born into a prominent family at a time when even wealthy women received minimal formal education.

1.1. From a family of crusaders (her sister was abolitionist author Harriet Beecher Stowe), Beecher took up the cause of educational reform and the promotion of women as teachers. Beecher recognized the untapped potential in the growing population of educated women and advocated for the wider education of females to fill this increasing need for teachers.

2. Catharine Beecher managed to get an education primarily through independent study, and she became a schoolteacher in 1821.

2.1. In 1823, she co-founded the innovative Hartford Female Seminary, whose purpose was to train women to be mothers and teachers.

2.2. This belief in preparing women to be respected professional caregivers also found an outlet in Beecher’s efforts to equip women to become teachers, a profession which Beecher saw as naturally suited to women.

3. A mass of contradictions, Beecher championed the intellectual capabilities of women, but remained an anti-suffragist throughout her life, believing that women could best influence society by their work in the home and the schoolhouse.

3.1. Beecher did not believe that women necessarily had to marry and have children, as she herself never did. A single woman could become a teacher, thus allowing her to share her feminine virtues with society and preparing her for the role of mother she might eventually assume.

4. In 1852, she founded the American Woman's Educational Association with the goal of recruiting and training teachers for frontier schools. She continued to advocate for teachers until her death in 1878.

4.1. American educator and author who popularized and shaped a conservative ideological movement to both elevate and entrench women’s place in the domestic sphere of American culture.

5. She believed that the primary goal of education should be to provide a basis for the development of the student’s conscience and moral makeup.

5.1. Humanism is a paradigm/philosophy/pedagogical approach that believes learning is viewed as a personal act to fulfill one’s potential.