The Future of Reading: The Syllabus


Vintage lady reading

I recently received the following request from a friend & former classmate:

Can you suggest a few key / huge / current books on the evolution of e-books and e-media, especially in the face of print culture? Theory, numbers, personal essays, experiences? How print and electronic texts augment each other or not?

What a great prompt. It brought to mind all kinds of wonderful things I’ve read or seen lately—though most are not in book form.

I thought I’d share my response publicly, and also gather your recommendations in the comments, because I know I don’t have a comprehensive list (yet!).


Websites, Blogs, Events, Talks

Specific Posts

What else is there? Let us know in the comments!

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  • virtualDavis

     Ooohhh, great list! I’m about to leave back and ponder the seduction of tablets with Jeff Jarvis… How had I missed Lean Back2.0? Thanks.

  • Kristen

    The first thing that comes to mind is:

  • Jane Friedman

    Here are a couple recommendations I’ve collected so far via Twitter:

    Cory Doctorow:
    The Future of Reading at RIT:

  • R. E. Hunter

    Seth Godin’s blog, such as this entry: The end of paper changes everything

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  • bfister

    The Late Age of Print by  Ted Striphas is a good one – more about the cultural context of books and reading in the last ten years than futurism, but good clean fun. 

  • Adventures

    Excellent list, thanks (yet again).

  • Sarah Tanburn

    Hi. It’s taken me ages to answer this because I wanted to finish the book and write the review first. But here is a addition: ‘The History of Reading” by Steven Tibor Fischer, which I’ve just reviewed on my blog at It’s a long book, published in 2003, so inevitably his predictions are off. But I like the way he embeds the current revolution in the our millennial love affair with reading, and a cool understanding of how technological change (the symbolic alphabet, movable type, paper) influences the way reading powers social change.

    Thanks for the blog, which I read regularly.

  • Jane Friedman

    Much appreciate the recommendation. Thank you!