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Book & Print in New Zealand : A Guide to Print Culture in Aotearoa


The purpose in generating print culture items is that they are read. This chapter discusses the development of attitudes to reading and literacy in New Zealand, opening with a survey of literacy programmes and resources within the formal education system from the 19th century through to the present day. This is complemented by the following section 'Creating an interest in print culture' which reviews ways in which a range of organisations, including the book trade itself, works towards increasing the general level of interest in reading.

'Recognition and rewards of success' identifies incentives for writers and the trade through literary prizes and awards, and also looks at the development of literary criticism and reviewing of New Zealand creative literature in English. A slightly different approach is taken in 'Changing trends and special needs' which surveys a broad spectrum of 'different' publications from comics to artists' books, and from talking books to luxury editions and CD-ROM products.

The final section of this chapter covers the major New Zealand access tools, which fill multiple roles in the print culture context. Bibliographies, indexes and general reference works are not only a publishing category of their own (and one worthy of detailed study), but they also provide a necessary infrastructure through which access is gained to print culture records and publishing history. They are valuable resources for researchers, who are readers of a special sort.