A contribution to the history of book design in Greece: printing the Primer with the Sun

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review


In the second decade of the twentieth century the liberal government of
Eleftherios Venizelos introduced a new legal framework for the compilation
and publication of teaching books. It was part of the government’s policy
to reform the role of school in society. The reading primer for the first form
of the primary school entitled the Primer with the Sun was produced within
this context. As a product it was the outcome of the collaborative work of a
group of specialists, educationalists, teachers, authors and an artist; they all
shared the same holistic view of the role of the reading primer not only as a
learning tool for reading but also as an instrument that imbued children with
a love of books. This chapter uses archival material and the evidence provided
by the book pages to discuss the decision-making process underpinning
the production of the book and explore the role of design in creating an
artefact that implemented the pedagogic views of authors in print and visual
form. It aims to make a contribution to the history of the design of books in
Greece by surpassing any aesthetically orienting account of the surface of
the book. For this reason the focus is on the circumstances in which the book
making process took place that often remain invisible but are important for
understanding the reasoning behind the book’s visual appearance and physical
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationDesign for visual communication
Subtitle of host publication Challenges and priorities
EditorsKlimis Mastoridis, Niki Sioki, Mary C. Dyson
Place of PublicationNewcastle upon Tyne, UK
PublisherCambridge Scholars
Number of pages18
ISBN (Print)978-1-5275-2954-0
Publication statusPublished - 2019


  • Typography
  • Graphic design history
  • Book design
  • Visual Communication


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