Lankshear and Knobel Second Chapter. Reflections

collage new literacies
During our recent affiliation in a variety of social media platforms in order to participate in the course Learning with digital stories, we are collectively generating our particular meaning and became members of a specific educational discourse reflecting our individual and group thinking. Lankshear and Knobel (2011) defined literacies as”socially recognized ways in which people generate, communicate, and negotiate meanings, as members of Discourses, through the medium of encoded text” In terms of our diary social practice, what are the unique meanings we are generating? Which ones are becoming our most effective way to communicate? What is the community practice that appeals to me most for my personal interest in positive change?

As Reckwitz pointed out, literacy practices involve various kind of non-observable elements. The different ways we are using to create and critique encoded text are transforming our communication routines but at the same time are reflecting our beliefs, interests, backgrounds, skills, and social practices. When I was reading, sharing, observing or commenting on other participants’ posts in our course I can identify a personal approach indicating the relationship between their literacy practices and their cognition. These mental patterns are extensive to our progressively increasing affinity community. We are creating a permanent imprint during personal and group participation such as blog idea tendencies or the auto generated hashtag for our group in twitter. As Gee explained these various elements and activities get all us together and ‘in sync’. What are the common interest we have as a group? What are the recognized ways of communication and negotiated meanings recurrent in our daily activities? Which are the core elements in our group involvement?

Our readings’ summaries have many recurrent topics and common core ideas and at the same time provide a enrichment and different perspective depending on each participant’s background. As Reckwitz mentioned mental patterns involved in practices are not private possessions but are part of social practice. I wonder if this idea is aligned with Jung’s concept of collective unconscious? Are we creating a collective unconscious knowledge or we are truly aware of it?

According to the authors, encoded text has the power to give permanence and transcendence to thought and language in the sense that they can travel without requiring particular people to transport them. This has an incredible pertinence to pedagogy focused on active learning. Catherine Boase (2013) wrote an interesting article about how to use digital storytelling for reflection and engagement when she pointed out how “…digital storytelling is a powerful tool of emancipation, revelation and discovery to maker and viewer alike. The effectiveness of a digital story depends primarily on the ‘story’ it tells, enhanced by the images…” produces literacies to draw attention to important social issues and is a wonderful approach to encourage critical thinking. How do we produce meaningful positive content minimizing misinterpretation of meaning? As Lankshear and Knobel suggested, new literacies practices requires shared interest and pleasures. What are effective ways to promote and expand interest in specific topic?


Boase, C. (2013) [Online]

Click to access boase_assessment.pdf

Lankshear, C. & Knobel, M. (2011). New Literacies: Everyday Practices and Social Learning. New York: Open University Press

One response to “Lankshear and Knobel Second Chapter. Reflections”

  1. I really enjoyed your reflection on this chapter. In fact, I wish I had read this synopsis before actually reading the text – I think I would have understood the text better. You raise a number of good questions, all of which, I’m sure, fueled the research into re-defining the word literacy.
    I really think that Lankshear and Knobel are not only expanding the concept of literacy to show that social media is a literacy, they are establishing social media and technology as a form a communication – one of which we are all engaged in some form or another.


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