chapter  17
Critical Literacies and Local Action: Teacher Knowledge and a “New” Research Agenda
Pages 14

Given the debates about what counts as literacy right now, as Western postindustrialized nations review their educational achievements, the addition of the word critical to literacy serves to complicate matters even further. And complicating things is one of the important features of a repertoire of practices that might be named critical literacy. When teachers and students are engaged in critical literacy, they will be asking complicated questions about language and power, about people and lifestyle, about morality and ethics, about who is advantaged by the ways things are and who is disadvantaged. Critical literacy resists any simplistic or generic definitions because its agenda is to examine the relationships between language practices, power relations, and identities-and this analysis involves grappling with specific local conditions.