History of Reading: Overview

From the contributors

The contributors to this Focus area thank Timothy Shanahan, IRA president 2006–07, for envisioning this resource and ensuring its transformation from idea to reality. Those interested in the history of reading instruction, literacy, and the book owe him a debt of gratitude.

We are presenting one bibliography on “Selected Topics in the History of Reading and Writing” and another on “Persons Who Influenced Reading Instruction in Colonial America and the United States.” We hope to expand both later. Please e-mail suggestions and comments to Norman Stahl.

Judy Fiene, Lou Ann Sears, Norman A. Stahl, Joan Taylor, Grace Vyduna-Haskins
associate editors

Marsha Britton, Cathy Corder, Susan E. Israel, Diane Lapp, Martyn Lyons, Jonathan Rose, William Teale


Special Interest Group

The History of Literacy Special Interest Group of the International Reading Association was founded in 1975. It sends out a Call for Papers annually and presents a program of papers on historical topics at every IRA convention. Its 8-page newsletter, the History of Reading News, is published twice a year, in the spring and fall. The group also offers a series of e-publications, ranging from brief histories of the political, educational, and research contexts for reading instruction in the 20th century to hints on undertaking historical research. The History of Literacy SIG presents triennial prizes for the best book, the best article, and the best dissertation on the history of reading.

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