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Bringing ethnography to a multimodal investigation of early literacy in a digital age

Flewitt, Rosie (2011). Bringing ethnography to a multimodal investigation of early literacy in a digital age. Qualitative Research, 11(3) pp. 293–310.

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In this article I reflect on the insights that the well established traditions of ethnography can bring to the more recent analytic tools of multimodality in the investigation of early literacy practices. First, I consider the intersection between ethnography and multimodality, their compatibility and the tensions and ambivalences that arise from their potentially conflicting epistemological framings. Drawing on ESRC-funded case studies of three and four-year-old children’s experiences of literacy with printed and digital media,1 I then illustrate how an ethnographic toolkit that incorporates a social semiotic approach to multimodality can produce richly situated insights into the complexities of early literacy development in a digital age, and can inform socially and culturally sensitive theories of literacy as social practice (Street, 1984, 2008).

Item Type: Journal Article
Copyright Holders: 2011 The Author
ISSN: 1741-3109
Keywords: early years; ethnography; multimodality; literacy; new technologies; social practice
Academic Unit/Department: Education and Language Studies > Centre for Language and Communication
Education and Language Studies
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Research in Education and Educational Technology (CREET)
Item ID: 28920
Depositing User: Rosie Flewitt
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2011 15:30
Last Modified: 18 Jan 2016 10:23
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