MagazineLiteracy.org

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Magazine for Literacy—as American as Apple Pie

by Carole Trone

Carole Trone, new volunteer Business Development coordinator for Magazine Literacy writes: I’m thrilled that I’ve been invited to participate in this project. I like history, so this post shares some of that. 

Historians tell us that America started as one of the most literate countries in the world. Puritans needed to read the Bible, merchants needed to build commerce in young and growing cities. This is important, because the rallying cry for revolution spread through speeches but perhaps more broadly through flyers and pamphlets. They were relatively quick and inexpensive to produce, short, and easy to pass around. Sure, we know that the Founding Fathers valued their books and their philosophers, but pamphlets were timely and accessible. Perhaps more importantly, they shared news about what was happening and what was possible.

To me, this means that the link between literacy, periodicals and new ideas goes way back in America. Connecting new ideas or bold proposals to anybody and everybody who can read about them is at the heart of democracy. With the exchange of ideas comes new ideas—inspiration about what might be possible.

Magazines can do this. Magazines can popularize ideas, give advice, summarize current events. Magazines can cover a little of everything or a probe a very specialized topic. Magazines can inform the scholarly and delight the toddler. Magazines can link the visual with the verbal, engaging readers more powerfully than words alone. Magazines are portable, affordable, and inviting. For all the volumes of books and millions of webpages out there, only a magazine is available to just about everyone.

This is the inspiration behind MagazineLiteracy.org  and all the volunteers who make it happen. Keep reading our blog for more examples of how it works.

  • Project Shoe Box

    Foster Care, Care Packages
    40 male and females age 5-18
    Wauwatosa, WI, USA
    Needs: 40 Magazines
    Any Magazines

  • Nunavut Inuit Families

    Education Program
    1,500 children and adults
    Nunavut Territory, Canada
    Needs: 250 magazines and comics
    National Geographic Little Kids, National Geographic Readers Digest, Sports Illustrated, education and fishing magazines, and comics.

  • Senior Star Adult Medical Daycare

    Mentoring, Job Training, and Education
    100 people age 50 and older and 50 people age 21-40
    Ewing, NJ, USA
    Needs: 180 Magazines
    Magazines Requested: culinary skills magazines (30), home magazines (30), computer magazines (30), learning magazines (30), and entertainment magazines (50)

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