Implementing multiliteracies in the Korean classroom through visual media

Lucien Brown, Noriko Iwasaki, Keunyoung Lee

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The notion of “multiliteracies” challenges the idea that language, communication, and meaning are stable entities. Instead, language is seen as constantly being transformed, reinvented, and contested (Kress, 2000a). This conceptual leap mandates several changes in the way that language and literature are treated in the second language classroom, including three that are crucial to the current chapter. First, it demands that we go beyond “mere literacy” (New London Group (NLG), 1996, p. 4) as the consumption of printed texts and toward the acceptance of film, new media, and other multimodal materials as valid “texts” that can be created and interpreted in the classroom setting (see Chapter 6, this volume). Second, it requires that we adopt a social-semiotic perspective on language (Halliday & Hasan, 1985), which features a broader understanding of linguistic knowledge as including the creation and interpretation of meanings conveyed through multiple channels. In more recent years, this broader understanding of language is talked of as “multimodal competence” (Royce, 2007). Teachers need to engage visual, gestural, spatial, and other semiotic modes within their everyday classroom teaching (see Chapter 4, this volume). As argued by Kress (2000b), such a shift is required due to the increasing prominence of visual elements in the contemporary communication landscape, with interpretation of such visuals being key to successful social interaction. Third, and most crucially, the notion of multiliteracies moves us away from a “curriculum-as-neutral stance” to a “critical pedagogy stance” that encourages learners to design their own meanings, develop their own voices, and discover-and indeed create-their own versions of the target language culture. This, in turn, will allow learners to participate more fully in society and become active in negotiating equity and social justice
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMultiliteracies in World Languages Education
EditorsYuri Kumagai, Ana Lopez-Sanchez, Sujane Wu
Place of PublicationNew York NY USA
Number of pages24
ISBN (Electronic)9781315736143
ISBN (Print)9781138832183, 9781138832190
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameLanguage, Culture, and Teaching

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