Sample Conclusion for Literacy Archive Essay

Literacy rebels present institutionally-placed sponsors with a complex challenge. As I have shown in my analysis of their literacy narratives, adolescent rebels dismissive of the “values and pedagogies” of school-based writing fulfill an adolescent imperative by seeing their disengagement from school-based literacy experiences as a sign of their emerging autonomy from the authority of significant adults in their lives. As a result of their fundamental orientation to the present, adolescent literacy rebels may not yet be ready to appreciate the value of analytical, evidence-based writing in the adult world. While some may say that the best teachers can do for such rebels is to explain the value of literacy and set them on the path of literacy, teachers who don’t understand the underlying reasons why adolescent rebels reject the literacy experiences offered them exacerbate rebels’ reluctance to enter the dominant Discourse of academic literacy.  For institutionally-placed adult literacy sponsors to be effective in their mission to recruit students into high-value literacies, they must be careful to respect adolescents’ need for autonomy and self-direction by offering them authentic opportunities to articulate their own values in dialogue with one another and the works of other writers. Even with such care, literacy sponsors should not expect all clients to accept their sponsorship because, as Deborah Brandt shows, all forms of literacy-sponsorship recruit clients into new ways of saying and writing, new values, and, ultimately, new identities. For some clients, being recruited into the Discourse may come with changes to beliefs, habits, and practices to which they are not (yet) willing to commit.

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