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[Xmca-l] Re: Sociocritical Literacies and more context

For those of us working with Kris' sociocritical perspective, third space
has been a valuable construct for thinking about collective learning zopeds
and consciousness for that matter. It is important to clarify what is meant
by "third space" and its analogous concepts in various schools of thought
(e.g., liminality, double consciousness, third place, etc.). The
post-colonial uptake of third space (e.g., Said, Bhaba, Spivak) within the
sociocultural theory is a very specific stance and this might be the moment
for that conversation as well.


Aria Razfar, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Literacy, Language, and Culture
Director of Graduate Studies, Curriculum and Instruction
University of Illinois at Chicago
1040 W. Harrison St. M/C 147
Chicago, IL, 60607

Director of English Learning through Mathematics, Science and Action
Research (ELMSA)

Webpage: http://education.uic.edu/personnel/faculty/aria-razfar-phd
Tel: 312-413-8373
Fax: 312-996-8134

-----Original Message-----
From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
[mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Kris Gutierrez
Sent: Tuesday, December 30, 2014 2:56 PM
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Sociocritical Literacies and more context

Annalisa, Manuel initiated the last uptake. (I think others have clarified
that now :)  

Mike C., Miguel Zavala, Larry Purss and I posted some thoughts before the
holidays.  For me it is useful to connect Manuel's recent post to those
earlier thoughts/conversations. 

Some very quick very unedited thoughts following up on Manuel's post:  

Michael G., Mike C. correctly points out that the
testimonios/autobiographies were not research techniques but generative
tools that were indeed a part of the interconnected set of practices that
created a collective zoped-a third space if you will.  I try to elaborate
this idea in the Scribner Lecture piece (sociocritical literacies).  My own
work on Third Space, the collective work of the instructional team of MSI,
ongoing conversations with Mike C. and Yrjo over the years at the lab, and
their work certainly informed this idea of a collective zoped, collective
third space  (See Engeström, 1987, 1994 in particular; Nicolopoulou & Cole,
1993; Tuomi-Gröhn & Engeström, 2003; Tuomi- Gröhn, Engeström, & Young, 2003;
Chaiklin, 2003, Moll, 1990; Moll & Greenberg, 1990 as key examples that
certainly inform this work as well. And LSV and Bakhtin are ever present).
These, I think, are useful references, all cited in the article. Shirin
Vossoughi's recent MCA piece also is very relevant to this discussion.

Some relevant excerpts from the sociocritical article, 

"To illustrate these points and their relation to a collective Third Space,
let us examine the MSLI more closely.
The activity system, the MSLI, has a specific internal logic organized
around expanding the students' sociohistorical and educational ecology
through the collective imagining of a new educational and sociopolitical
To avoid the "interactional reductionism implicit in much
Vygotskian-inspired research" (Nicolopoulou & Cole, 1993, p. 284), the
specific interactions and practices of the MSLI are understood as what
Nicolopoulou and Cole call a "genuinely collective reality" (p. 284).

Here we see the [Migrant] institute as an example of the Third Space, a
collective zo-ped, at the larger level of activity the object of which is
the sociohistorical reconstruction of what it means to be a migrant student.
This movement involves a process of becoming conscious "historical actors"
(Espinoza, 2003) who invoke the past in order to re-mediate it so that it
becomes a resource for current and future action (p. 154)." 

Testimonios and their embodiment in Teatro del Oprimido (Boal's Theatre of
the Oppressed that Manuel introduced to us and the program and that he and
Vossoughi elaborated) were key means of developing/inciting a new social and
pedagogical imagination and for imagining new futures with/for the migrant
students, their communities, and indeed for all of us, as Manuel so
thoughtfully writes. Teatro served as a collective problem-solving space-a
space where the playful imagination helped to make inequities and the roots
of social problems visible, while providing an opportunity to re-frame
events, re-mediate and enact an imagined future collectively (such as flying
collectively/social dreaming).  I hope Manuel and Shirin jump in and
elaborate these thoughts.

Re: Research design:  For me, Migrant was in Yrjo and Mike's approach, a
formative experiment; what I term social design experiments-a designed based
research approach that foregrounds equity, diversity, historicity, and
re-mediation, for example. As Susan Jurow and I wrote and presented at the
ICLS conference this summer (a piece that we expect will be part of a larger
set of papers with Mike C., Yrjo and Annalisa, and Bill Penuel), social
design experiments: aim to make possible a sustainable and dignified life
for all humans; address the challenges of leveraging cultural diversity and
reducing social inequality; and call for the co-design of new tools and
futures with members of non-dominant communities, as but a few key design

     Absolutely, research as re-searching-searching for the answer to a
question you have searched for repeatedly without success! Well said, Miguel
Cole! Thanks, for your thoughts, Michael Glassman! 

     more on sociocritical literacies, later.   kris


Kris Gutierrez

Kris D. Gutiérrez
Graduate School of Education
5629 Tolman Hall #1670
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley CA 94720-1670

Distinguished Professor
Learning Sciences and Literacy
School of Education
University of Colorado, Boulder

> On Dec 30, 2014, at 9:50 AM, Annalisa Aguilar <annalisa@unm.edu> wrote:
> Hello!
> Sorry for being silly here, but I couldn't help but see that so far on
this thread, there have been appearances by:
> mike, Annalisa, Michael, Luisa, and Miguel!