[xmca] Call for Proposals, NCTEAR (Literacy, Bodies, Images)

From: Kevin Leander (kevin.leander@vanderbilt.edu)
Date: Tue Aug 29 2006 - 06:23:57 PDT


National Council of Teachers of English Assembly for Research
Mid-Winter Conference
Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, Nashville Tennessee
February 23-25, 2007

What Counts as Literacy? Living Literacies of the Body and Image

The Assembly for Research of the National Council
of Teachers of English announces a conference on
"What Counts as Literacy: Living Literacies of
the Body and Image" to be held on Feb. 23rd-25th,
2007, at Peabody College of Vanderbilt University
in Nashville. In recent years, interest in new
literacy practices that involve the body and the
image has rapidly increased among educators.
Clearly, literacy has always involved material,
embodied practices and disciplines, and even
print texts involve visual and often aesthetic
elements. Yet, the rapid expansion of new media,
the possibilities of digitization to blend old
and new visual forms, and the new and rapid
circulations of multi-modal texts calls for
theory building, research, and new forms of
educational practice. At this conference, our
plan is to further expand our research, teaching,
and critical imaginations in relation to an
expansive definition of literacy that includes
visual texts, broadly defined (e.g., photographs,
moving images, maps, digital game worlds,
advertisements) and embodied performances and
representations (e.g., drama, performance pieces,
group interactions, representations of raced and
gendered bodies, body art). We also welcome
topics that examine how bodies are
institutionally 'read' in ways that grant or deny
access to particular forms of literacy over

As we share theories, methods, and new practices
for re-conceiving of literacy education as
multi-modal and embodied, we wish to do so with a
critical edge that interrogates such "new
literacies." For whom are literacies of the body
and image "alive" or accessible? Whom do such
literacies serve? How do literacies of the body
and image interrupt or reproduced social
inequities? Whose bodies are viewed as literate
in schools and other institutions? How might such
practices and texts serve as mediational means
for acquiring traditional literacy practices?
Following the tradition of NCTEAR, such questions
about equity and social justice will inform the
core of our collective conversation around
literacies of the body and image.

We welcome conference proposals grounded in
diverse theoretical and methodological
perspectives, including, among others: semiotic
analysis, sociocultural studies, performance
theory, critical race theory, film theory,
critical discourse analysis, poststructural
analysis, historical studies, and others. We
invite proposals that focus on empirical
research, including teacher/action research, as
well as conceptual/theoretical work.

The following questions are offered as a guide to
our collective dialogue and inquiry; we welcome
proposals that address these or related issues:

o How might social practices with bodies and
images be used to scaffold literacy learning with
traditional print texts? What are the problems
inherent in taking such a scaffolding perspective
that might be viewed as privileging print?

o What are the current roles of visual and
embodied literacies in the lives of socially and
culturally diverse children, youth, and adults in
out-of-school settings? What are the roles of
such practices in school? The workplace?

o What are the possiblities of current methods of
investigation regarding embodied and visual
literacies? How are such methods infused with a
print perspective, and how might they be

o How do current literacy research methods, such
as ethnography, include bodies and images in
their modes of theory-building and
representation? How might we re-imagine research
representation? For embodied practices, what are
the limits of representationalism?

o How have visual and embodied literacies been
incorporated into teacher education and what are
the barriers to reconceiving teacher education in
this way?

o How does current educational policy (e.g. NCLB)
affect literacy pedagogies that seek to
incorporate multimodal and embodied literacies?

o What embodiments of literacy are privileged in
schools, families, community organizations and
other sites, and what are the implications for
our work as researchers and educators committed
to social change.

Keynote Speakers

Brian Edmiston, Teaching and Learning, The Ohio State University
Hilary Janks, Applied English Language Studies,
University of Witwatersrand, South Africa
Robert Jiménez, Language, Literacy, and Culture,
Peabody College of Vanderbilt University
Muziko Ito, Annenberg Center for Communication,
University of Southern California and Keio
University in Japan
Walter Jacobs, Postsecondary Teaching and Learning, University of Minnesota
Eva Lam, Learning Sciences and Asian American Studies, Northwestern University
Jay Lemke, Educational Studies, University of Michigan
Carmen Medina, Language and Literacy Education, University of British Columbia

Workshop Presenters

Maria Asp, Neighborhood Bridges, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Julie Cheville, Literacy Education, University of Maine, Orono
Hilary Janks, Applied English Language Studies,
University of Witwatersrand, South Africa
Charles Kinzer, Mathematics, Science, and
Technology, Teachers College, Columbia University
Margaret Sheehy, Reading, University at Albany

Guidelines for Proposal Submission:

Presentation Summary:
Proposals should include a cover page (directions
below) plus no more than 2 single-spaced pages
addressing the following: (1) Focus of the
presentation/background of the problem; (2)
connections to research and/or theoretical
literature(s); (3) research question(s) and
research methods/methodology; (4)
findings/issues/questions for discussion, as well
as how the research contributes to the conference
conversation. If your paper is a
conceptual/theoretical one, please describe your
theoretical framework and argument and tell how
it will contribute to the conference
conversation. Please indicate in the opening
lines of the proposal whether you intend to focus
on empirical or conceptual/theoretical questions.

Session Format:
30-minute sessions in roundtable format. Please
make an effort to plan for substantial
Cover Page
Include the following information for all presenters:
Mailing address(es)
Telephone number(s)
E-mail address(es)
Title of presentation
Abstract of paper (200 word limit)
Indicate whether this is a round table or poster session.
Audio-visual requests (overheads, TV/VCRs
supplied without charge and upon request)
Computers and LCD projectors equipment are not
provided and must be brought by presenters.

Review Process:
Review criteria will include the quality of the
proposal and the degree to which it addresses the
conference theme.

Submit proposals via email to: Kristy Snyder at wardx311@umn.edu
Please include "NCTEAR Proposal" as the subject line.

Proposals must be received by November 1, 2006.

Address any questions to Conference Co-chairs
Kevin Leander (kevin.leander@vanderbilt.edu) or
Cynthia Lewis (lewis@umn.edu)

Kevin Leander, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Teaching and Learning
Vanderbilt University
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