• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This Handbook critically examines research and theoretical issues that impact writing development from the early years through to adulthood. It provides those researching or teaching literacy with one of the most academically authoritative and comprehensive works in the field. With expert contributors from across the world, the book represents a detailed and valuable overview of a complex area of study.

Developing Discourse Roles and Positionings – An Ecological Theory of Writing Development
Developing discourse roles and positionings – an ecological theory of writing development

This chapter points to the need for an ecological theory of writing development. It takes the view that development of writing at school implies learning to negotiate the voices and roles offered by the genres of school writing. This approach, inspired by Mikhail Bakhtin's (1986) ideas about the dialogical relationship between individual utterances and what he calls ‘speech genres’, calls for a discussion of the relationships between individual writers, their texts, discourses in the classroom with teachers and fellow students, culture-specific norms and expectations for writing at school, values and beliefs in the societies the writers inhabit, and writers' sense of who ...

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