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Kathryn Pearson

Victoria Hafner
Negotiating Translingual Literacy Research Abstract

I. “This research article proposes that writing outside of your native language requires a
different thought process, stemming away from the one used when writing in your native
language, as a process where you have to be consciously aware of words and their associated
meanings in a new context. This process used from writing in a foreign language is used to
construct meaning of new words and is more of a performance rather than instinctive. The
researcher aims to demonstrate that students writing in their native language and students
not writing in their native language are able to change between these processes given the
right circumstances and materials in the classroom. He uses an ethnographic perspective in
which he identifies four different negotiation strategies used by students to interpret texts.
Focusing on the envoicing, recontextualization, interaction, and entextualization, this
researcher looks at the different negotiations to further develop students’ negotiation
strategies. Previous research in this area has had the emphasis placed on code-meshing or
“a form of writing in which multilinguals merge their diverse language resources with the
dominant genre conventions to construct hybrid texts for voice” (Canagarajah, 2006).
Suresh Canagarajah, A. (2013). Negotiating Translingual Literacy: An Enactment. Research
in the Teaching of English, 48(1), 40-67. Retrieved March 23, 2015, from
Prior research has focused on code-meshing when it comes to handling multilingual
relationships. Code meshing is “a form of writing in which multilinguals merge their diverse
language resources with the dominant genre conventions to construct hybrid texts for voice”
(Canagarajah 40). Scholars have expanded the notion of translingualism to include the
method and product of multilingual texts. He suggests moving beyond the text itself, which is
limited to the autonomous alphabet driven language, in order to understand that language
draws on oral and written sources. In addition to texts drawing on oral and written sources, he
shifts the attention of texts to look at the global circulation where the interaction of texts in a
global contact zone emphasizes the plurality of norms in a communicative situation.
His goal is to prove that multilinguals use “intuition, perception, and imagination to
co-construct” meanings of texts in a variety of contexts (Canagarajah, 43). Another linguist,
Khubchandani, discovered that people do not use the form of the text, but rather they focus
on the communicative practices to create meaning of a text. In a communicative practice, the
text then becomes a resource in the communicative process that provides meaning to
language. Everyone in this scenario becomes both the reader and the writer where there is a
shared responsibility. His purpose is to redefine literacy to where the text is performed as it is
understood in its time and space.

Kathryn Pearson
Victoria Hafner
Negotiating Translingual Literacy Research Abstract
III. How can teachers readdress the way that students create meaning within translingual
texts? What strategy is best for students when negotiating meaning within these texts? What
kind of writing do students produce when using these strategies?
IV. Independent variable: the design of the course (the four strategies provided), the
assignments (a variety of reading and writing), and classroom management.
V. Dependent variables: transferring of literacy skills from L1 reading and how students were
able to show their understanding of their newly constructed meaning through their writing.
VI. Students need to be aware of the four different strategies. He does provide information
for teaching strategies, but merely promotes awareness of this fact. There is no one best
strategies, but envoicing, entextualization, recontextualization, and interactional strategies.
Students writing displayed code-meshing based on the strategy used.
VII. His studies imply that by using the empirical approach, students and teachers will use
the material text as a resource for negotiation. In the negotiation strategy, the text is seen as
not definitive, but rather a communicative means for further understanding. By using the text
as tools as a resource, students can further develop a pedagogical negotiation where they will
learn to understand the meaning of literacy through a plurality of norms. Negotiation of
meaning involves practices that are more exploratory because it forces a critical thinking
where students find the meaning based on the texts background context. This also requires the
teachers of the classroom to encourage students to bring their own strategies based on the
four strategies provided in this article. It allows for students to have their own dialogical
understanding with the text and establish a meaning based on their own context.
VIII. How do you differentiate the classroom based on students’ different strategies? How do
you facilitate meaning in a smaller context and know that the understandings derived from
the different constructs correlate?