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Reading the Past, Writing the Future: A Century of American Literacy Education and the National Council of Teachers of English - Previous Revision


A rich and thoughtful history of literacy education and of NCTE, Reading the Past, Writing the Future is for every teacher of the English language arts and English studies who wonders where we’ve been, how we got where we are today, and where we all might be traveling as literacy educators in the 21st century. 

See Also

"Learning as We Go: NCTE, 100 Years and Counting" from The Council Chronicle


A Long Way Together: A Personal View of NCTE's First Sixty-Seven Years by J. N. Hook

Leila Christenbury’s introductory essay discusses trends in American literacy education. Then, prominent scholars focus on activities and subject matters central to teaching English language arts and college English:

  • teaching reading, writing, language, and literature;
  • using new media effectively;
  • working for social justice in the classroom, school, and community;
  • devising responsible means to assess the work of students and teachers;
  • initiating the next generation into the profession;
  • cultivating an ethos for action among those who support as well as critique this work;
  • looking toward the work that remains to be done in the century ahead.


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NCTE - The National Council of Teachers Of English

A Professional Association of Educators in English Studies, Literacy, and Language Arts