Struggles for equality

September 22, 2000

Forgive me for questioning the accuracy of your report on my contribution to the debate on widening access to higher education at the European Access Network annual convention in Santiago de Compostela (Analysis, THES, September 15) What I said was that the undoubted achievements of the present government, and its predecessors, in overseeing rises in participation from circa 6 per cent to 35 per cent (and rising), were at least partially the result of a long history of struggles for equality of opportunity.

The achievements of which we spoke in the conference were inherited from those who saw poverty, deprivation, racial and gender discrimination and the divisive effects of inherited privilege and elitism in British society as barriers to a fair and more inclusive and just society.

I called for recognition of past struggles as a necessary guide to our present understanding of equality.

David Davies

University of Derby

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