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Negotiating el difícil: uses of English text in a Rural Puerto Rican community

Author(s): Catherine M. Mazak

Journal: Centro Journal
ISSN 1538-6279

Volume: XX;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 50;
Date: 2008;
Original page

Keywords: second language literacy | literacy practices | English as a Second Language | language acquisition

This article is an ethnographic account of the uses of English text in a rural Puerto Rican community. Data was collected during four months of participant observation in a K-9 school library/community center. Participants were observed using a wide variety of English texts, regardless of their English proficiency levels. It was found that community members participated differently in English literacy practices (regularized uses of English texts), depending on their age. Adults read and wrote English texts related to the sociotextual domains of bureaucracy, health, and finances, while young people used English texts in the domains of entertainment and personal communication.
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