Introduction: the rise and fall of social work?

Steve Rogowski

in Social work

Published by Policy Press

Published in print October 2010 | ISBN: 9781847424488
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447303527 | DOI:
Introduction: the rise and fall of social work?

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Although social work in Britain has been probably the most disparaged and discredited profession of the past 35 years, this intensified under New Labour. Managerialism, marketisation, and scapegoating by the media and politicians certainly appear to have contributed to widespread demoralisation. In looking at Enlightenment philosophy and the associated question of modernity, of particular relevance to the beginnings of social work in the middle of the nineteenth and into the twentieth century were liberalism and, later, Marxism. This was when the forerunner of modern social work, the Charity Organisation Society, developed, and when the state, often reluctantly, became more involved in welfare provision. This book looks at the rise and subsequent fall of social work as a profession. It focuses on policy and practice developments in relation to children and families, including young offenders, and charts the changes in the professional education and training of social workers over the past 40 years. The book also discusses Thatcherism, the professionalisation of social work, and postmodernism.

Keywords: Thatcherism; professionalisation; social work; postmodernism; Britain; children; families; young offenders; managerialism

Chapter.  9847 words. 

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