After reading "Why Are We Using Literacy as a Metaphor for Everything Else?" by Anne Wysocki and Johndan Johnson-Eilola, it continues to excite me to begin delving into my Master's project. I have a secret obsession with studying literacy and really looking at what it means. Here are some essential quotes I pulled from the text and will explain below why I see them as important:
- "[It] is possible to describe information not as something we send from place to place, in books or on paper, over time, but as something we move (and hence think) within" (363).
- "[Literacy] changes profoundly if we choose to prioritize space over time" (362).
- "The bundle of meanings and implications that comes with [the word, literacy] is...much denser and messier" (353).
- "No single term--such as 'literacy'--can support the weight of the shifting, contingent activities we have been describing" (366).
Honestly, I might as well reference the entire article, but I contained myself to these four quotes. For my project I will be studying literacy and the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) - this is in a broad sense. Wysocki and Johnson-Eilola just reassured me that the way I define literacy is not out of the ordinary. I see literacy as MORE than just reading and writing. Yes, I believe that it is the base of literacy. However, society has advanced in technology, and literacy has and needs to advance with it.
This is why I decided to pull out the first two quotes. These quotes emphasize that literacy is something we are constantly using, and its changes do affect space over time. The third and fourth quotes reflect how I currently feel when dabbling with the term, literacy. To me, Jay L. Robinson in “Literacy in the Department of English” describes it best: “[literacy] is a wonderfully ambivalent term, its meaning dependent upon the contexts in which it is used” (483). Wysocki and Johnson-Eilola would support what Robinson says as they end the chapter by discussing that even though many new terms are given in relation to "literacy," the list may never be exhausted (368). That is the thing with literacy - it is creative.
I've realized what I enjoy most about studying literacy is that it is a challenge. I am never bored reading information on literacy because people view it differently and the ways of applying it to teaching changes every minute. It will be very interesting to see what "literacy" looks like 10, 20, or 50 years from now. My guess is that we would see remnants of the definitions from 2012, but it will probably be drastically different and much more complicated.