LOA in the Community

Library of America aspires to make it easier for readers around the globe to be enriched by America’s enduring literary and historical works. Through community partnerships, as well as educational resources and donated volumes, we help readers near and far to engage in meaningful ways with the nation’s best and most significant writing. Below is a sampling of some of the collaborative initiatives spearheaded by Library of America.

  • Changing Lives Through Literature

    Changing Lives Through Literature is an alternative sentencing program that uses reading and discussion of literary works to help individuals reform their lives. This visionary program—now offered in communities in Massachusetts, Texas, Arizona, Kansas, Connecticut, Maine, New York, and Rhode Island—works to break the cycle of crime by offering offenders an opportunity to educate themselves and, in turn, have their sentences and probation time reduced. Library of America is honored to partner with CLTL and pleased to present a book to every graduate of the program. To date, with support from our donors we have provided nearly 3,000 volumes to offer program participants access to the transformative power of America’s best writing.

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  • The Clemente Course in the Humanities

    The Clemente Course in the Humanities offers tuition-free, college-level courses in the humanities to underserved individuals aged 17 and older. Established in 1994 by Earl Shorris, author of Riches for the Poor, the Clemente Course was created to empower economically and educationally disadvantaged young adults to become active and productive members of American society.

    Participants receive instruction in humanities disciplines, exploring key moments in American history, as well as masterpieces of literature, philosophy, and the fine arts. Many of the financial barriers to higher education are removed: tuition is free and books, carfare, and childcare are provided. The Clemente Course currently operates more than 29 affiliate programs that are offered by Bard College; University Wisconsin, Madison; and other respected institutions nationwide.

    Since 1999 Library of America has provided approximately 200 books annually as gifts to Clemente graduates, to recognize their accomplishments and enhance their personal libraries. Graduates are also offered a free subscription to LOA’s Story of the Week online feature so that they may maintain a connection to a literary community.

    Gifts of any size to defray the cost of providing these volumes to Clemente are welcome and tax-deductible.

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  • Gift Sets Program

    Library of America offers a special discount to encourage individuals to donate volumes to institutions in their communities, such as a child’s school, an alma mater, or a public library.

    A gift of Library of America volumes is 100% tax-deductible and can be made in honor of a friend or family member. This is a wonderful way to recognize an enthusiastic reader or regular patron of a particular library.

    Past recipients of gift sets have included public and private schools, colleges, universities, public libraries, prisons, the American Library in Paris, the American Academy in Rome, the Roosevelt Institute in Hyde Park, New York, the Clemente Course in the Humanities, and Recording for the Blind & Dyslexic, among many others.

    Volumes given through the Gift Sets Program are discounted to $30 each—30 percent off LOA’s already-discounted retail price—and shipping is free. You may create a Gift Set of any size, from a few volumes to the complete Library of America Series. A handsome bookplate acknowledging your gift will be placed in the front of each volume given.

    If you are interested in donating a set of Library of America volumes, please contact Caroline Horn, Director of Institutional Advancement, at support@loa.org or 212-308-3360.

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Library of America
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A champion of America’s great writers and timeless works, Library of America guides readers in finding and exploring the exceptional writing that reflects the nation’s history and culture.

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From poetry, novels, and memoirs to journalism, crime writing, and science fiction, the more than 300 volumes published by Library of America are widely recognized as America’s literary canon.

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With contributions from donors, Library of America preserves and celebrates a vital part of our cultural heritage for generations to come.

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