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Grant number like: FA-52141-05

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Katrina Mary Powell
Louisiana State University (Baton Rouge, LA 70808-4600)

Fellowships for University Teachers
Research Programs

[Grant products][Media coverage]

$40,000 (approved)
$40,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2005 – 7/31/2006

A Study of Letters Written in the 1930s by Mountain People Displaced by the Creation of Shenandoah National Park

Rhetorics of Displacement focuses on a situated literacy event: letters written by displaced Virginia mountain families to U.S. government officials in the 1930s. The 300-letter collection reveals a moment in American history where the social/political climate was ripe for this relocation. Through rhetorical and discourse analyses, this project considers literacy as social and symbolic action and explores what individual literate acts say about educational practices. This socioliteracy study places competing discourses about the region’s history alongside contemporary literacy theory to uncover complexities in resisting social position. The resulting analyses contribute to evolving theories of literacy and identity.