Literacy, Emotion and Authority Reading and Writing on a Polynesian Atoll

ISBN-10: 0521485398
ISBN-13: 9780521485395
Edition: 1995
List price: $45.99 Buy it from $19.23
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Description: Literacy continues to be a central issue in anthropology, but methods of perceiving and examining it have changed in recent years. In this study Niko Besnier analyses the transformation of Nukulaelae from a non-literate into a literate society using  More...

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Book details

List price: $45.99
Copyright year: 1995
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Publication date: 8/24/1995
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 256
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.792
Language: English

Literacy continues to be a central issue in anthropology, but methods of perceiving and examining it have changed in recent years. In this study Niko Besnier analyses the transformation of Nukulaelae from a non-literate into a literate society using a contemporary perspective which emphasizes literacy as a social practice embedded in a socio-cultural context. He shows how a small and isolated Polynesian community, with no access to print technology, can become deeply steeped in literacy in little more than a century, and how literacy can take on radically divergent forms depending on the social and cultural needs and characteristics of the society in which it develops. His case study, which has implications for understanding literacy in other societies, illuminates the relationship between norm and practice, between structure and agency, and between group and individual.

Introduction
The ethnographic context
The domains of reading and writing
Letter writing and reading
Letters, economics and emotionality
Between literacy and orality: the sermon
Literacy, truth and authority
Conclusion

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