1.27.2005

circulating/ion

i always feel a rush after a conversation so full of questions and possibilities. we troubled the notion of the in/out of school dichotomy and wondered, like moje, about where the youth are in literacy research. but what i was struck by the most is the these questions are still persisting... perhaps another way of stating that is to muse what the site of action is once we understand/recognize, e.g. literacies as social practices; e.g. youth as literate across contexts; e.g. the value of literacy practices beyond the school walls (literally and figuratively) for literacy theory, practice, research...

we also raised the question of representation today (much to my delight!). i made my standard comment about jim gee and his video games book: which is to say that the book is about video games and learning and literacy... and not an image to be found (?!?!?) i, like many others, enjoyed the book, but wished that some of the oomph! that is present when gee talks about "this stuff" was more readily present in the text. this brings us back to representation and the question of how might we go about researching and representing the literacy practices that youth engage in across contexts? what media do we access to do this representational work? and for whose purpose are the various forms of representation produced?

i have made another point clear to the class - this is my first time blogging. just saying the word still makes me chuckle. the point (and there is one...) being that for as much as i am invested in learning about and exploring youths' literacies, i have been remiss in delving more fully into the online literate worlds of youth - work that is being done wonderfully by many wonderful people:

...just to name a few... (i know there are others - let me know!)
but what i realized was this: for many of the youth with whom i was working, the online world had not become "home" as it has for many of the young people involved in the studies of the folks above. it's not that the youth with whom i worked did not play video games - they did! but their platforms of choice were more often the free standing game systems; on the whole, they accessed the internet for encapsulated tasks or practices associated with particular kinds of (in our case) storytelling in which we sought out images (or produced images and texts) in the ongoing production of other texts... the questions here have to do with equity and access to technologies, to be sure; but, i think that there was more going on there than just the usual talk of the "digital divide"...

i'll keep coming back to this idea - about who is and isn't involved in the discussion about the increasingly digital landscapes of youths' literacy practices; and i hope to keep asking the questions of why? and what questions are not being asked, particularly about "old" media and how we might engage in the construction of new literate spaces...