1st Edition

Reading Poverty in America

ISBN 9780415722735
Published March 17, 2014 by Routledge
154 Pages

USD $48.95

Prices & shipping based on shipping country


Book Description

In this book Shannon’s major premise remains the same as his 1998 Reading Poverty: Poverty has everything to do with American public schooling–how it is theorized, how it is organized, and how it runs. Competing ideological representations of poverty underlie school assumptions about intelligence, character, textbook content, lesson formats, national standards, standardized achievement tests, and business/school partnerships and frame our considerations of each.

In this new edition, Shannon provides an update of the ideological struggles to name and respond to poverty through the design, content, and pedagogy of reading education, showing how, through their representations and framing, advocates of liberal, conservative, and neoliberal interpretations attempt the ideological practice of teaching the public who they are, what they should know, and what they should value about equality, civic society, and reading. For those who decline these offers, Shannon presents radical democratic interpretations of the relationship between poverty and reading education that position the poor, the public, students, and teachers as agents in redistribution of economic, cultural, and political capital in the United States.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1:  Poverty: A National Disgrace
Chapter 2:  Conditions and Consequences
Chapter 3:  Opportunity – Liberals
Chapter 4:  Character – Conservatives
Chapter 5:  Competition – Neoliberals
Chapter 6:  Collective Agency – Radical Democrats

View More



Patrick Shannon is Professor of Education, Pennsylvania State University, USA. He is an elected member of the Reading Hall of Fame.


“The revised edition of Reading Poverty is as significant today as it was when it was first published over a decade ago.  In this new edition, Shannon examines the inadequacy of current literacy policies and practices and encourages a more radical democratic agenda—one that moves beyond liberal, conservative, and neoliberal solutions and invites action, agency, and collective response.“
   Rebecca Powell, Georgetown College, USA

"This book performs ideological readings of ‘poverty’ and ‘literacy’ and attends to larger sociopolitical contexts of education through a distinctive, critical approach. This is a very timely and important book, and Patrick Shannon is the right person to (re)write it."
   Jory Brass, Arizona State University, USA