Monaghan , E. Jennifer, 1933-
E. Jennifer Monaghan, daughter of Clement and Margery Elton Walker, was born in Cambridge, England. She received her B.A. (1955) and M.A. (1976) in Literae Humaniores from Oxford University, England, a M.A. in Greek from the University of Illinois (1958), and a doctorate in Reading Education from the Ferkauf Graduate School of Yeshiva University, New York City (1980). Her doctoral thesis was titled "Noah Webster's Speller, 1783-1843: Causes of Its Success as Reading Text."
Dr. Monaghan served as an instructor and professor with the School of Education and Department of Educational Services at the Brooklyn College of CUNY from 1978 to 1994, where she taught developmental reading and English as a Second Language (ESL) courses. She served Brooklyn College as Professor Emerita within the English Department after her 1994 retirement.
Dr. Monaghan founded the History of Reading Special Interest Group ("SIG") of the International Reading Association in 1975 and edited its newsletter for 25 years. In 1988, Dr. Monaghan was elected as associate member of Darwin College, Cambridge University, England. She was awarded a Brooklyn College Wolfe Fellowship in 1994-1995.
Dr. Monaghan authored several books, including Shaping the Reading Field: The Impact of Early Reading Pioneers, Scientific Research, and Progressive Ideas (2007), Learning to Read and Write in Colonial America (2005), Reading for the Enslaved, Writing for the Free: Reflections on Liberty and Literacy (2000), and A Common Heritage: Noah Webster’s Blue-Back Speller (1983). In Learning to Read and Write in Colonial America Dr. Monaghan examines the instruction of girls and boys, Native Americans, enslaved Africans, the privileged and the poor in Colonial America, and the impact of literacy on the lives of these young learners. Dr. Monaghan co-authored Shaping the Reading Field (2007), and has published several book chapters and articles on the history of literacy, teaching language arts, and research methodology.
It was during her studies in the United States and a visit to New York that Monaghan met her future husband, Charles Monaghan. They lived in Brooklyn most of their married life and had three children: Leila, Tony, and Claire. E. Jennifer Monaghan passed away from a stroke in September 2014.