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Reading as participating: a study of embodied experiences of reading and writing

Pace Balzan, Ninette (2015) Reading as participating: a study of embodied experiences of reading and writing. EdD thesis, University of Sheffield.

Thesis - Ninette Pace Balzan.pdf
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Abstract The focus of this collaborative research is on seeking what enables or constrains participation in reading and writing as a social practice. Eight individuals with a label of dyslexia discuss and reflect, over a period of a year, on past and present experiences around reading and writing, and develop a personal narrative. The study uses a phenomenological approach, and ethnographic and narrative methods within a New Literacy Studies framework, situating experiences, and perceptions of them, within social and cultural contexts. The participants discuss, and reflect on, past and present experiences to design and develop their narrative. In the process, the relationship between experiences and perceptions and its effect on identity and agency, is explored. As participants each construct a narrative, with themselves as the protagonist, they ‘sediment’ their literate identities into the text, to be further reflected on. Initially, this collaborative study sets out to find what support, intervention, and community concessions persons labelled with dyslexia require, but this changes when the participants, through discussion and reflection on emotions, discourses and artifacts within the narrative, uncover covert sociocultural factors which hinder their reading and writing. The study moves away from a tacit acceptance of personal deficit or difference, leading to a label of dyslexia. It finds that the shift in the perception of literacy, from a definable and measurable goal to be reached, to one of participation in a social practice, enabled or hindered by embodied experiences, redefines the label of dyslexia, as reflecting restricted participation, and therefore social exclusion. Keywords: Literacy Experience Embodiment Participation Perception Emotion Discourses Mediating artifacts Identity Agency

Item Type: Thesis (EdD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > School of Education (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.635405
Depositing User: Dr Ninette Pace Balzan
Date Deposited: 16 Feb 2015 09:13
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2016 12:09
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/7930

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