The publication and consumption of geography textbooks

The publication and consumption of geography textbooks
Tim Hall (University of Winchester) and James D Sidaway (National University of Singapore)

Textbooks, it has been argued, shape disciplines. They certainly reflect disciplinary mores and fashions. Yet despite their importance to the discipline there has been limited discussion of the production and consumption of geography textbooks. This panel will bring together authors, editors and a publisher. They will reflect on the publication and consumption of textbooks in geography amidst changing pedagogic, economic and socio-technical landscapes. In so doing, the panel will build on earlier published debates, considering the future of research monographs in geography (Ward et al, 2006), the political economy of publishing (Barnett & Low, 1996), the influence of textbooks (Hubbard & Kitchen, 2007; Johnston, 2006) and canonicity (see the theme issue of the Journal of Historical Geography Volume 49, 2015 on ‘the geographical canon’). Although mindful of shifting mores and modes in publishing and higher education, we also want to bring an historical perspective (as in Keighren, 2010) to bear on the discussions.

C Barnett & M Low (1996) Speculating on theory: towards a political economy of academic publishing. Area, 28 (1). pp. 13-24.

P Hubbard & R Kitchen (2007) Battleground geographies and conspiracy theories: a response to Johnston (2006), Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers NS 32 428-434.

R J Johnston (2006) The politics of changing human geography’s agenda: textbooks and the representation of increasing diversity Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers NS 31 286-303.

I M Keighren (2010) Bringing Geography to Book: Ellen Semple and the Reception of Geographical Knowledge (I. B. Tauris, London)

K Ward et al (2009) The future of research monographs: an international set of perspectives, Progress in Human Geography 33(1) 101-126.

This is the website for the History and Philosophy of Geography Research Group (HPGRG) of the Royal Geographical Society with the Institute of British Geographers (RGS-IBG)

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