Hi there tout la gang,

We don't have much to say about research in practice at the Café right now

but we are talking policy and practice over here now: Literacy Enquirers.

Monday, August 27, 2007


A few weeks ago, a colleague from Scotland wrote to me. She said that this blog

is a reminder for me that adult literacy work is going on, not just in the UK but in several parts of our world and this makes me wonder why? I'm sure that all the different countries have differences in their education systems... Is there some common bad practice we all share? Or is it more simple -- is it just a case that too much emphasis is placed on reading and writing? I must admit that a lot of the people I have worked with have got through their lives with very limited or basic reading and writing skills, and that a lot of the stress they feel is about the stigma and feeling inadequate or, more specifically, not normal.

Her words sum up what literacy workers do: work with compassion each day towards a more inclusive society. Sadly this work is often unrecognized.

Here's a thought to bolster your spirits in time for International Literacy Day, or the start of the academic year. It's from Becoming Human by Jean Vanier:

The belief in the inner beauty of each and every human being is at the heart of...all true education and at the heart of being human. As soon as we start choosing and judging people instead of welcoming them as they are -- with their sometimes hidden beauty, as well as their more frequent visible weaknesses -- we are reducing life, not fostering it. When we reveal to people our belief in them, their hidden beauty rises to the surface where it may be more clearly seen by all. (p.23)

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