LINGUIST List 32.3505

Thu Nov 04 2021

Disc: Literacy Mediators

Editor for this issue: Everett Green <>

Date: 12-Oct-2021
From: Andrey Rosowsky <>
Subject: Literacy Mediators
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Fellow Linguists,

I wonder if you may be able to help with a research project I am currently engaged in. I am looking for any examples of literacy mediators (Barton 2007, Street 1993 and 2001, Papen 2005a) who are able to read (decode) for someone whose language they do not know. For example, reading a letter in, say, Kikuyu by an English speaker who attempts a rough approximation of the written words in a letter written in Kikuyu using Roman script for a recipient/listener who is a Kikuyu speaker but who cannot read. I have also come across the perhaps apocryphal story of the illiterate Finnish shipbuilder working in Newcastle (UK) whose letters from home are read out to him by a non-Finnish speaking Geordie friend.

Has anyone any other examples they can point me towards??

Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics

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