1st Edition

Youth, Critical Literacies, and Civic Engagement Arts, Media, and Literacy in the Lives of Adolescents

    144 Pages
    by Routledge

    144 Pages
    by Routledge

    Through stories of youth using their many voices in and out of school to explore and express their ideas about the world, this book brings to the forefront the reality of lived literacy experiences of adolescents in today’s culture in which literacy practices reflect important cultural messages about the interplay of local and global civic engagement. The focus is on three areas of youth civic engagement and cultural critique: homelessness, violence, and performing adolescence. The authors explore how youth appropriate the arts, media, and literacy as resources and how this enables them to express their identities and engage in social and cultural engagement and critique. The book describes how the youth in the various projects represented entered the public sphere; the claims they made; the ways readers might think about pedagogical engagements, practice, and goals as forms of civic engagement; and implications for critical and arts and media-based literacy pedagogies in schools that forward democratic citizenship in a time when we are losing sight of issues of equity and social justice in our communities and nations.


    Donna Alvermann


    1. Youth Literacies: Arts, Media, and Critical Literacy Practices as Civic Engagement

    2.  Shouting from the Street: Youth, Homelessness and Zining Practices

    3.  Leaving Out Violence: Talking Back to the Community through Film

    4.  Performing Adolescence: Staging Bodies in Motion

    5.  Youth Claims in a Global City: Texts, Discourses, and Spaces of Youth Literacies

    Appendix: Descriptions of Arts Pedagogical Practices with Youth



    Theresa Rogers is Professor, Language & Literacy Education, University of British Columbia, Canada.

    Kari-Lynn Winters is Associate Professor of Drama Education, Brock University, Canada.

    Mia Perry is Director of Research at the ecl foundation and based in Scotland, U.K.

    Anne-Marie LaMonde is Instructor, Teacher Education, University of British Columbia, Canada.

    "It's time to move beyond the new literacies rhetoric. Theresa Rogers and her colleagues’ intervention models how new public pedagogies can make a difference for homeless youth and for their urban Canadian communities. It is grounded, powerful and politically important work".

    Allan Luke, Emeritus Professor - Queensland University of Technology, Australia

    "The authors should be commended for shedding light on the passion and desire to address social inequalities of marginalized youth through civic engagement and popular culture while embracing a multidisciplinary approach to critical literacy practices of contemporary youth."

    Laurie Henry, University of Kentucky, USA

    "The arts change the world by bringing to voice one person, then another. Soon, one hopes, we will all be singing…. We are lucky these young artists are speaking and that the authors have made it possible for us to hear them."

    Therese Quinn, University of Illinois at Chicago, USA