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Young children and the construction of linguistic habitus
Uppsala University, Faculty of Educational Sciences, Department of Curriculum Studies.
(English)Conference paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Literacy development begins very early in a child’s life. Literacy practices are, to most children, an integral part of everyday life. Children are members of families, groups and communities, and literacy is embedded in the social interaction of the child’s surroundings. They see their parents and other people around them engaging in activities such as reading, writing, talking on the telephone, using the computer and so on, patterns of behaviour that the child imitates. Thus they behave like readers and writers long before they can actually read and write.  They make habits of literate behaviours. The French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu calls this linguistic habitus, emphasising the importance of early childhood experiences. Individuals are the products of particular histories which endure in their habitus.

The research presented in this paper is part of a Ph.D in progress. The goal is to explore the contexts in which seven children, born 1998, from different sociocultural backgrounds experience literacy. In which literacy events do the children participate? What kinds of habitus do the children construct?

Most of the data comes from the children’s families, but much is also taken from other sociocultural contexts such as the children’s pre-schools, Sunday school and religious settings in the synagogue.

Keyword [en]
emergent literacy, literacy event, literacy practice, habitus
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Research subject
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-102810OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-102810DiVA: diva2:216782
Avser deltagande vid EECERA, 13th Annual Conference on Quality in Early Childhood Education, Glasgow, 3-6 september, 2003Available from: 2009-05-12 Created: 2009-05-12 Last updated: 2009-06-02Bibliographically approved

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