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ERIC Number: ED479065
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-May
Pages: 217
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: ISBN-0-521-59661-0
Literacy and Literacies: Texts, Power, and Identity. Studies in the Social and Cultural Foundations of Language.
Collins, James; Blot, Richard K.
This book surveys both classical and current (mainly anthropological) literature in the field of literacy studies, combined with critical discussion of particular cases. The book explores questions of power, cultural form, and historical process as they are raised by and developed in studies of literacy, and draws on the history of literacy, critical education studies, and the anthropology of literacy to develop a new synthesis. It argues that neither the generalizing, universalist claims of the "consequences of literacy" thesis, nor the contextualizing, situated studies of the "New Literacy" offer satisfactory approaches to the phenomenon of literacy. Through analysis of two domains--that of literacies and power and that of literacies and subjectivity--the book reveals historical processes associated with literacy practices while also challenging received assumptions about literacy, intellectual development, and social progress. Following a Foreword (Brian V. Street), chapters in the book are: (1) Introduction: Texts, Power, and Identity; (2) The Literacy Thesis: Vexed Questions of Rationality, Development, and Self; (3) Situated Approaches to the Literacy Debate; (4) Literacies and Power in Modern Nation States: Euro-American Lessons; (5) Literacies and Identity Formation: American Cases; (6) Literacy, Power, and Identity: Colonial Legacies and Indigenous Transformations; and (7) Conclusion: Literacy Lessons--Beginnings, Ends, and Implications. Each chapter includes notes. Also contains approximately 500 references. (NKA)
Cambridge University Press, Midland Ave, Port Chester, NY 10573-4930 ($22). Tel: 800-872-7423 (Toll Free); Fax: 914-937-4712; Web site:
Publication Type: Books; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A