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Social, Cultural and Historical Perspectives

Colin Lankshear and Michele Knobel

This book presents sixteen essays in the new literacy studies tradition, written during the period 1985-2010. It covers a diverse range of themes with a particular emphasis on topics of cultural, political and historical interest. The collection includes both previously published and unpublished works, and is organized in four sections. Topics addressed in Part 1 include functional literacy, the politics of literacy in Nicaragua during the Sandinista period (1979-1990), the rise of the working class press in Britain, and reader response and the teacher as meaning-maker. Part 2 discusses critical literacy and active citizenship, literacy and empowerment, language and the new capitalism, varying ways of using computers in and out of school, and the way a low achieving student challenges conventional notions of literacy failure. Part 3 addresses the new literacy studies and the study of new literacies, the theory and practice of attention economics, and early developments in the use of ratings within online communities and social practices. The final part of the book takes up the theme of researching new literacies, discusses practices of digital remix, and provides a case study of becoming research literate within a context of DIY media creation.