Reading groups, libraries and social inclusion: experiences of blind and partially sighted people. [BOOK REVIEW]

Amanda M L Taylor

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article reviewpeer-review


In Reading Groups, Libraries and Social Inclusion: Experiences of Blind and Partially Sighted People Eileen Hyder captures an ethnographic research project, the focus of which is a library-based reading group for people who have a visual impairment. This account is coherently set against a comprehensive bibliography, indicating that a careful review of relevant literature was carried out. The stated aims of the project were ‘to learn more about the individuals who belong to the group’ and ‘to explore the reading group experience’ (2).

The text is divided into six chapters beginning with an informative introduction; followed by verbatim accounts of the ‘reading histories’ from each participant. An interesting appraisal of the importance of reading for people with a visual impairment leads to a thought-provoking examination of reading groups and social justice; with the role of the library thoroughly explored and to some extent challenged. Finally, the concept of lifelong learning is discussed; ending with information gathered from respondents who answered a call from the author, via the International Federation for Libraries, explaining innovations that are occurring across the globe.
Original languageEnglish
Article numberISN:0968-7599
Pages (from-to)1172-1173
Number of pages2
JournalDisability and Society
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2014


  • reading groups
  • partially sighted reading groups
  • reading groups for the blind
  • social inclusion
  • groupwork


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