The Power of Literacy

April 4, 2013 | | 1 Comment

I am taking a class called Marginalization and Representation in which we learn alot about marginalization groups and how marginalization works. This class really ignited an interest in learning more about how Marginalization really works and how these groups can make progress in escaping from the margins. Part of the reason why my interest was so inspired was how we are looking at the same sort of things within this class but on a much more micro level.  Alot of the works we have read and examined focus on this sort of issue specifically.

As a result  I cannot wait to write this article about the effects of literature on marginalization in this country. I am going to try to focus on looking at how literacy as grace and power affect Marginalized groups. I think it is crucial to not simply think of it as a way for groups to move towards the center but also as a method of oppression to prevent them from reaching the cetner. For example I think examining Frederick Douglas’ work can yield an example of how literacy as both power and grace can work for the good of the fringe groups. Looking at the Canon can serve as a contrast to the Douglas example as it is often a tool to maintain the stratification within our society. Some works such as Orwell’s have examples of both within them in seeing as how political writing can liberate or enslave depending on its author and purpose.

Truly I cannot wait to begin writing this article as it is a perfect way to really bring together not just all the of the work we have done in this class but in the work of all of my classes this semester.  It looks at one of the larger issues our class focuses on in a broad scope but it grounds this broad scope with specific analysis through the works we have studied in class.



1 Comment so far

  1.    Claire Bowen on April 4, 2013 8:09 pm

    Do you mean literature’s effect/s on marginalization or literacy’s effects on it? The difference is crucial here, because while literary texts often write against marginalization–by, for example, representing its workings and effects–literacy is often promoted, even too simplistically, as a corrective to marginalization. As you begin to read and work on this article, Taylor, I’d encourage you to go back to the Guillory text and locate it in his whole book, called _The Canon as Cultural Capital_. Read the introduction to that book over this weekend and I think you’ll have much more direction.

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