Enterprising complicities: the queen, the king, the prostitute and other literacy triangles

Baskin, Colin (2001) Enterprising complicities: the queen, the king, the prostitute and other literacy triangles. International Education - ej, 5 (2). pp. 1-7.

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This paper describes how student writers both construct and are constructed by the discursive resources upon which they draw in the process of writing. This paper raises the caveat that this process of adaptation has far-reaching implications for the writer, in terms of how the 'social self' is defined, and in terms of how subsequent community orientations and relationships are formed.

The first aspect of the paper shows how the processes of integrating social and institutional identities give rise to a personal sense of struggle around academic writing. The student account presented in the first part of this paper begins with the claim that the "business faculty is racist". She identifies a 'triangle' of existing subject positions, that of the 'Queen', the ‘King’ and her own position as the 'prostitute'. These identities are textually based, and are the result of deliberate and enterprising practices. The transcript data presented in this part of the paper illustrates how the social identity of the student writer has its roots in this complex of historical, social and cultural practices and values, and how relations of 'order', 'difference', and 'belonging' are formed.

Part Two of the paper shifts this focus on 'relations of order', 'difference', and 'belonging' to the faculty level. Here the language-marked writer reports a comparative struggle to come to terms with the practice of successful academic writing, namely 'patterns of knowing about', and 'behaving toward texts (Haas 1994:43). The literacy practices of reading and writing in this view are social, historical and cultural practices, described by Burns (1994) as a set of competencies around 'skim reading’, 'deeper reading', 'taking-notes', 'summarising material', 'writing essays', 'citing references', 'using arguments', and 'using grammatical conventions'. Triangulations around these sets of competencies, wherein contrasts between formulations of literacy practice – as local, international and non-native speaking - are both explicit and implied as 'socially produced' and 'symbolically' organised.

Item ID: 26037
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1327-9548
Keywords: student writers
Date Deposited: 03 Apr 2013 01:10
FoR Codes: 16 STUDIES IN HUMAN SOCIETY > 1608 Sociology > 160809 Sociology of Education @ 50%
20 LANGUAGE, COMMUNICATION AND CULTURE > 2099 Other Language, Literature and Culture > 209999 Language, Communication and Culture not elsewhere classified @ 50%
SEO Codes: 95 CULTURAL UNDERSTANDING > 9501 Arts and Leisure > 950104 The Creative Arts (incl. Graphics and Craft) @ 100%
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