'There has been no comprehensive treatment of American influence on Australian English-teaching in high schools and universities prior to the Second World War. Its retrospective invisibility is a consequence, not of its real absence, but of the colonial publishing arrangements that made it difficult or impossible to import American educational books into Australia during that period.
This paper will explore two of the ways in which, despite these restrictions, American ideas and practices of literary criticism did manage to penetrate Australian English teaching before the Second World War. One of these was by the importing of American authors and texts in British imprints. British publishers like Harraps were particularly active in this area: I estimate that something like 40% of their English education list, 1901-1930, comprised American-authored books, co-published in the US by D.C. Heath, Thomas Crowell, Frederick Stokes, Houghton-Mifflin and others. The activities of the Australasian Publishing Company, established as a distribution agency by Harraps in 1916 in collaboration with Houghton-Mifflin and Constable, were especially relevant in this regard.
Other, more individual channels of influence were important too: Ernest Moll, for example, an Adelaide-born scholar and poet, graduated from Harvard, and spent his whole academic career lecturing at the University of Oregon, where he practised and wrote about literary appreciation (in the formal American sense). He also visited Australia regularly, including a two-year stint at the Sydney Teachers' College in 1939- 40, arranged by the then head of English George Mackaness. My conclusions will be based on an inspection of the large collection of correspondence between Harrap and Houghton-Mifflin at Harvard University, interviews with former employees of Harraps and of the Australasian Publishing Company, and the Ernest Moll Papers in the NLA.' (Author's abstract)