Cultural literacy is familiarity with and ability to understand the idioms, allusions, and informal content that create and constitute a dominant culture. From being familiar with street signs to knowing historical references to understanding the most recent slang, literacy demands interaction with the culture and reflection of it. Knowledge of a canonical set of literature is not sufficient in and of itself when engaging with others in a society, as life is interwoven with art, expression, history, and experience. Cultural literacy requires familiarity with a broad range of general knowledge and implies the use of that knowledge in the creation of a communal language and collective knowledge.
- E. D. Hirsch Jr. (1987). Cultural Literacy: What Every American Needs to Know. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. ISBN 0-395-43095-X.
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- Anson, Chris M. "Book Lists, Cultural Literacy, and the Stagnation of Discourse" The English Journal 77.2 (February 1988), pp. 14-18.
- Zurmuehlen, Marilyn "Serious Pursuit of Cultural Trivialization" Art Education 42.6 (November 1989), pp. 46-49.
- Simpson, Alan "The Uses of "Cultural Literacy": A British View" Journal of Aesthetic Education 25.4, 25th Anniversary Issue Winter, 1991), pp. 65-73.
- Reedy, Jeremiah "Cultural Literacy and the Classics" The Classical Journal 84.1 (October 1988), pp. 41-46.
- Murray, Denise E. Diversity as Resource. Redefining Cultural Literacy (Alexandria, Virginia) 1994.
- Bernard Schweizer. "Cultural Literacy: Is It Time to Revisit the Debate?" Thought & Action 25 (Fall 2009).
The dictionary of cultural literacy