02. early education

What did you find interesting about studying?

 

I went to all girls schools. I didn't mind that at all. I was then at the point of studying for the equivalent of the HSC and I quite liked studying but I was definitely arts inclined. I did geography and history, maths and English.

 

I just thought it was interesting finding out about things. I liked discussion type classes particularly English literature and I had to do religious instruction and I am not now a religious person. I went to Sunday School when I was very little but I didn't quite like the philosophy which is one of punishment and that one was watched by a supreme being. I objected that I couldn’t consider being anything. I didn't like being told that I was not good. I quite liked the study of history in the Bible as an adolescent and the philosophy behind it. As a 13 year old I was quite pseudo religious, a young girl can be quite romantic so at 13. I thought I might be a missionary.

 

I had a literary family and I read quite a lot my favourite room in school was the library and as I was an only child that was my chief activity. The school encouraged me but I think my parents were concerned that I should be developed and everybody was settling down to this new environment. My mother was particularly keen on education as her mother had been and the women in my family were keen and my father was a Marxist and his mother didn't believe in education mainly because they were working class and came from the shipbuilding yard and they were chapel people and she wanted her son to be clean and quiet and read books and he read books and became quite well educated.  He didn't go to university but he would have been clever enough to go university. He was quite well educated and had socialistic tendencies and was told not to publicise his extreme leftwing views because he might not have kept his job. My mother was more lightning and more conservative. I settled in and went to school and made some good friends but I wasn't really very happy I found it disruptive having come from one city and having to move to a different place.

 

I won a scholarship when I was 17 to go on the American Field Association.  One could go to America for a year. I enjoyed school, I enjoyed my education and I liked drawing the pictures in biology classes and I enjoyed drawing the maps. I enjoyed signing in the choir so they encouraged me to be more outward going. My mother was very gregarious. She was so gregarious. I was in school plays and all these activities were encouraged.


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