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Ashton-Warner, Sylvia

Sylvia Ashton-Warner, 1905–84, New Zealand British novelist and educator, b. Stratford, New Zealand. For years a teacher of Maori children, Ashton-Warner developed many stimulating educational methods about which she wrote in the treatise Teacher (1963) and in successive volumes of her autobiography (1967, 1972, 1979). Her success as a teacher and as a writer stemmed from her conviction that communication must produce a mutual response if it is to bring about lasting change. Spearpoint: Teacher in America (1972) recounted her experiences teaching in an experimental school in the United States. Ashton-Warner's novels were written in an exotic, rather florid style and for the most part concern strong, passionate women. They include Spinster (1958), Incense to Idols (1960), Bell Call (1964), Greenstone (1967), and Three (1970).

See study by L. Hood (1989).

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