This book asks researchers what uncertainty means for literacy research, and for how literacy plays through uncertain lives. While the book is not focused only on COVID-19, it is significant that it was written in 2020-2021, when our authors’ and readers’ working and personal lives were thrown into disarray by stay-at-home orders. The book opens up new spaces for examining ways that literacy has come to matter in the world.
Drawing on the reflections of international literacy researchers and important new voices, this book presents re-imagined methods and theoretical imperatives. These difficult times have surfaced new communicative practices and opened out spaces for exploration and activism, prompting re-examination of relationships between research, literacy and social justice.
The book considers varied and consequential events to explore new ways to think and research literacy and to unsettle what we know and accept as fundamental to literacy research, opening ourselves up for change. It provides direction to the field of literacy studies as pressing global concerns are prompting literacy researchers to re-examine what and how they research in times of precarity.
“This is an excellent book, nicely conceived and well-organised, and carefully crafted for maximum effect, making an important contribution to literacy studies scholarship. A 2020 visionary account of a distinctive, disruptive moment in time, and why innovative, reflexive work in literacy continues to matter. A thoroughly commendable project.” – Emeritus Professor Bill Green, Charles Sturt University
“Unsettling Literacies is an inspiring collection that moves and shakes the field of literacy research to consider how to mobilize the tremendous uncertainty and precarity we are experiencing and to awaken understandings of new and more equitable practices of literacy. Lee, Bailey, Burnett and Rowsell have produced a powerful and much needed volume filled with innovative perspectives on literacy that demonstrate the resiliency with which people have moved with the changing times, charging us think more boldly about our path ahead as literacy researchers.” – Professor Ernest Morrell, University of Notre Dame