ERIC Number: ED475392
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003
Reference Count: N/A
Poverty, Racism and Literacy. ERIC Digest.
Corley, Mary Ann
In the prevailing and traditional definition, literacy is regarded as central to helping people obtain and retain employment, which is the key to moving them from dependency toward greater self-sufficiency. Another, more valid perspective is the view that literacy is not just the acquisition of reading and writing skills but is also a social practice and social currency and, as such, a key to social mobility. The operative force that causes certain groups of people to be marginalized in society, to be regarded as inferior, and to experience unequal and limited access to resources is institutional racism. If a primary purpose of literacy education is to eliminate poverty, then literacy programs and practices must be redesigned to fit various conceptions of poverty and its causes. Some educators and researcher espouse the notion of critical literacy, which is the practice of helping learners make sense of what they are learning by grounding it in the context of their daily lives and reflecting on their individual experiences, with an eye toward social action. Ten practices that literacy providers can use to ensure that their programs are culturally relevant and to encourage learners to move toward critical reflection have been identified. (Contains 29 references.) (MN)
Descriptors: Adult Basic Education, Adult Literacy, Critical Thinking, Culturally Relevant Education, Educational Change, Educational Mobility, Educational Needs, Educational Objectives, Educational Practices, Literacy Education, Poverty, Racial Bias, Social Integration, Social Mobility
For full text: http://www.ericacve.org/pubs.asp.
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Adult, Career, and Vocational Education, Columbus, OH.