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"Uses & Functions of Literacy in Morocco, 1960s - 1990s" (diss.)

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  • Don Osborn
    FYI. The abstract does not mention literacy in different languages as a major factor. It would be interesting to know how this is treated by the author. (fwd
    Message 1 of 1 , May 30 7:35 PM
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      FYI. The abstract does not mention literacy in different languages as
      a major factor. It would be interesting to know how this is treated by
      the author. (fwd from Linguist List)... DZO


      Date: 06-May-2006
      From: Reddad Erguig <reddad@...>
      Subject: Uses and Functions of Literacy in Morocco from 1960s to 1990s

      Institution: Mohamed V University
      Program: Languages and Cultures in Contact
      Dissertation Status: Completed
      Degree Date: 2003

      Author: Reddad Erguig

      Dissertation Title: Uses and Functions of Literacy in Morocco from
      1960s to 1990s

      Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

      Subject Language(s): None ()

      Dissertation Director:
      Brahim Moussabbir

      Dissertation Abstract:

      This study investigates the culture of literacy in the Moroccan
      context, with a particular emphasis on the historical changes in the
      uses and functions of the alphabetic literacy skills of reading and
      writing. Through the use of statistics, documents, informal
      observation, a questionnaire and interviews, we attempted to shed
      light on the literacy situation in post-independent Morocco and
      highlight the recurrent literacy practices of a representative sample
      of Moroccan people and show how they differ according to gender and
      urbanity.

      The study first shows that people associate a variety of meanings with
      the concept of literacy: some of these meanings have been linked with
      the concept of literacy regardless of the historical context; whereas
      other meanings are determined by the social circumstances in each
      specific era.

      Second, the results of the study reveal that the uses and functions of
      literacy have recently become various in kind and multiple in range.
      Some of these literacy practices have continued to be important while
      others have gained in value. Still new literacy practices have
      appeared. Such practices have been found out to be shaped by the
      context. They are influenced by gender differences, since men tend to
      make basically official uses of reading and writing; whereas women are
      inclined to make personal uses of reading and writing. The uses also
      vary along urbanity lines, since literacy use is limited in the rural
      areas.

      Third, literacy attitudes have been found out to be mixed since the
      1960's. By and large, the literate were held in great esteem although
      people in some rural areas were unaware of the benefits with which
      literacy was associated. In the 1990's, similarly, although literacy
      is stressed as a means whereby one can meet the everyday life needs,
      more critical attitudes are expressed towards it, especially
      concerning its connection with employment, because of the saturation
      of the job market and the increasingly widespread access to the
      audiovisual media. The electronic media and means of communication now
      perform some of the functions formerly associated with print literacy.
      In fact, out of the complex interplay of different media, the
      electronic media, which promote 'second' orality and challenge the
      role of reading and writing, are widely used; whereas print media,
      notwithstanding the increasingly various uses made of them, are used
      on a less regular basis. As for 'primary' orality, it has maintained
      its role of having access to local information.

      The educational and pedagogical implication of such findings is that
      campaigns have to be elaborated and launched in different parts of the
      country to sensitise people to the danger of marginalising print
      literacy. The illiterate ought also to be motivated to participate in
      anti-illiteracy campaigns in order to acquire literacy through making
      them aware of the utility of literacy in their everyday lives. It
      would be fruitful, though, to use the audiovisual media, particularly
      television and the radio, in order to contribute to the success of
      literacy programmes.
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