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Norton Reader: What is it? Do you use it for high school?

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I have a copy of the 12th edition of the Norton Reader: Anthology of Nonfiction that I got from the library, and I'm intrigued.  But I can't put my finger on what this is.  I see essays written by Benjamin Franklin and Frederick Douglass and George Orwell, as well as essays by contemporaries like Molly Ivins, Nicholos Kristof, and Malcolm Gladwell.  What is this collection, and do I need the latest edition (14th)?  The cover says that 25% of the readings are new.  


It looks like it has potential in a high school curriculum, but I'm not sure how.  How do you use it?  

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