This chapter provides a broad historical overview of English language education over the last 100 years, encompassing contexts where English is taught as a first language as well as key developments in the field of English as a second or foreign language. The review highlights how the teaching of English has always been shaped by larger social and political forces of a given era. I also describe convergent trends in language education that stem from an increasingly shared understanding of language learning as social and ideological practice and that has blurred historical distinctions between L1 and L2 instruction.