Literacy in Practice: Writing in Private, Public, and Working Lives, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Literacy in Practice

Writing in Private, Public, and Working Lives, 1st Edition

Edited by Patrick Thomas, Pamela Takayoshi


250 pages

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The rise of New Literacy Studies and the shift from studying reading and writing as a technical process to examining situated literacies—what people do with literacy in particular social situations—has focused attention toward understanding the connections between reading and writing practices and the broader social goals and cultural practices these literacy practices help to shape. This collection brings together situated research studies of literacy across a range of specific contexts, covering everyday, educational, and workplace domains. Its contribution is to provide, through an empirical framework, a larger cumulative understanding of literacy across diverse contexts.


With an exemplary mix of senior and junior scholars and of people from Education and Composition Studies, this book breathes new life into the New Literacy Studies. One of the best collections of work on sociocultural and experimentally-situated approaches to literacy to have appeared in a long while.

James Paul Gee

Mary Lou Fulton Presidential Professor of Literacy Studies and Regents’ Professor

Arizona State University

"Throughout this collection, the reader sees the editors’ point about the value of studying how people use literacy. These subjects are easy to visualize and bring to life how literacy practices impact the individual and how each individual’s literacy choices contribute to the evolution of culture in the 21st century." – Laurie Shirley Esposito

Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Methodological Matters and the Invisibility of Literacy Patrick Thomas & Pamela Takayoshi Part 1: Literacies in Private Lives 2. Researching Social Media Literacies as Emergent Practice: Changes in Twitter Use after Year Two of a Longitudinal Case Study Stacey Pigg 3. Building Social Worlds: Examining Women’s Uses of Romance Novels Stephanie Moody 4. Seniors’ Uses of Literacy to Gain Bodily Control in Medical Encounters Yvonne R. Teems 5. Digital African American Language: A Corpus Analysis of Text Messages Jennifer Cunningham 6. Reconfiguring the "Patient" Identity: Transcontextual Writing Practices of a Person with Multiple Sclerosis Patrick Thomas 7. Physically Present and Digitally Active: Locating Ecologies of Writing on Social Networks Amber M. Buck Part 2: Literacies in Public (Academic) Lives 8. Academic Consequences of Performing for Friends in ELA Classrooms: The Significance of Culture and Language Mary Beth Ressler & Mollie Blackburn 9.Stepping Out with the Fop: Literacies of Embodiment and Becoming in Youth Drama Treavor Bogard 10. English Language Literacy and the Prediction of Academic Success in and beyond the Pathway Program Jennifer E. Haan & Karyn E. Mallett 11. Emotionally Exhausting: Investigating the Role of Emotion in Teacher Response Practices Nicole Caswell Part 3:Literacies in Working Lives 12. First Encounters in Professional Cyberspace: Writers’ Explorations of LinkedIn Elizabeth Tomlinson 13. Literacy Practices in Lunch Pails: Invisible Literacies of The Dabbawalas Uma Krishnan 14.Enacting Professional Literate Practice: A Snapshot of One Graphic Designer’s Process Lindsay B. Steiner 15. Delivering the News: Literacy and Collaborative Response Practices at Midwest Utility Jillian Hill 16. Distributed Labor, Writing, and an Automotive Repair Shop Jeremy Cushman Conclusion: Research on Literacy in Practice: Domains, Maps, and Emerging Challenges Patricia Sullivan

About the Editors

Patrick Thomas is Assistant Professor of English, University of Dayton, USA.

Pamela Takayoshi is Professor of English, Kent State University, USA.

About the Series

Routledge Research in Literacy

This series is the home for high quality monographs and edited collections in Literacy Studies. We publish books by leading-edge researchers engaged in international dialogues on a broad range of topics. Many of our volumes are by leaders in the field of Literacy Studies; others are by relatively new scholars. You are welcome to contact the editors if you would like to discuss your idea prior to submitting a proposal.

Please send ideas/proposals to Uta Papen ([email protected]), Julia Gillen ([email protected]), and Elsbeth Wright ([email protected]).

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Research