Community Literacies & Schooling

Community Literacies and Schooling



Study Lead: Dr Sunita Singh

Team Members: Dr. Prabhat Rai, Surajit Sarkar

This research project will focus on community literacies and the role it plays in the schooling of children. It builds on the understanding that literacy practices are deeply shaped by sociocultural factors, such as, children’s lives in their communities, and the power dynamics in societies that privilege certain kinds of cultural practices over others. The project will be situated in Delhi, and will be conducted in one community in Vasant Kunj that consists largely of migrant populations from the eastern parts of the country. While the history of migration of individual families and their current lives are key in understanding how their identities are shaped—these also lend to the development and expression of multiple forms of literacy practices within the community. However, as children and parents navigate formal schooling, they are faced by mainstream normative discourses and forms of schooling that may or may not connect with the literacy practices available in the community.


Given the complexities of the project in identifying community boundaries and contexts across school, qualitative methods will be used for data collection and analysis. Both community and school will serve as sites of study.

Methods will include community visits, interviews with various stakeholders in the community and also mapping the daily lives of parents and children and the forms of literacies they engage in within the communities. The children will be followed to school, where a similar mapping of literacy practices at school will be conducted, as well as interviews with key stakeholders within the school setting.