Orality as cultural action

Contributions to literacy


  • George Lovell Boggs Florida State University
  • Rob Duarte Florida State University
  • Justin Manglitz Independent Scholar




twenty-first-century literacies, authentic writing, communities of practice, disciplinary literacies, talk


Literacy education, especially writing in US secondary schools, suffers for its detachment from the breadth of social purposes for which literacy is required and in which literacy is developed. Complex forms of cultural communication are best learned in conjunction with creative, productive, action sanctioned through authentic social connections. Orality offers clues to the development of practice-oriented literacy education that can help contextualize emerging interest in disciplinary literacy within broader cultural worlds that give us practical reasons and rules. This paper presents four cases of practice-oriented communication, which encompass a broad set of communities of practice. They offer multiple avenues for thinking about the role of practice and oral communication in teaching writing as a twenty-first-century literacy. Discussion of the cases suggests opportunities for instruction in situated, contingent, and emergent twenty-first-century literacies.

Author Biographies

George Lovell Boggs, Florida State University

George Lovell Boggs holds an MA from the University of Durham, UK. He majors in Classics and Ancient History. He holds the Facility for Arts Research, Department of Art, Florida State University. He has been invited to develop artistic installation about interdisciplinary STEM-education.

Rob Duarte, Florida State University

Rob Duarte is an artist and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Art at Florida State University. He earned a BS in Business Information Systems with a minor in Computer and Information Science from the University of Massachusetts, a BFA in Sculpture from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, and an MFA in Visual Arts from the University of California San Diego.

Justin Manglitz, Independent Scholar

Justin Manglitz is a father, husband, whiskey maker, homesteader, and old time musician from the hardscrabble hills of Haralson County, GA. He is an expert at learning to do things that most modern Americans are happy to have done for them. Playing the fiddle like Tommy Jarrell, the greatest achievement attainable by humankind, is his current (and likely ultimate) endeavor. He studied History and Business at the University of Georgia, receiving a bachelor’s degree in 2004, after which he founded Blockader Homebrew Supply in Athens, GA. Manglitz eventually sold the business in order to stay at home and raise his children and livestock while his wife Marci earned an income in the dog eat dog world of Librarianing.



How to Cite

Boggs, G. L., Duarte, R., & Manglitz, J. (2017). Orality as cultural action: Contributions to literacy. Writing and Pedagogy, 9(1), 21–47. https://doi.org/10.1558/wap.22200