Multitextual Literacy in Educational Settings: Contextual Analysis and the Dab

  • Karen McGarry University of Cincinnati
Keywords: addressivity, appropriation, CDA, gesture, transdisciplinary, utterance


Literacy is more directly linked to language arts than the visual arts even though both disciplines demand a high level of proficiency knowledge. This article examines how Feldman’s (1970) art criticism model, applied in visual arts and aesthetics, and Fairclough’s (2015) critical discourse analysis (CDA), used predominantly in literacy research, imbricate to reveal a multitextual literacy approach to gesture as an extension of utterance. Transdisciplinary textual analysis, supported by Bakhtin’s theories on addressivity and social language construction (1986), critique both cultural appropriation and media literacy. Gesture, as an extension of utterance, transpired from witnessing a random gestural act, blurring textual boundaries in a decoding process to suggest multiliterate awareness in learning ecologies. Art criticism reflection and CDA reveal methods for examining communication processes within cultural contexts and, as a result, suggest integration into educational settings as vital tools for conscientious textual decoding praxis.

Author Biography

Karen McGarry, University of Cincinnati

Karen McGarry is a visual artist and arts educator currently working toward a PhD in Educational Studies at the University of Cincinnati. Research interests embrace reflection/reflexivity and critical pedagogy in teacher education and teacher professional development. Prior experience includes adjunct work in teacher education, secondary level visual art and humanities teaching, and studio practice supporting visual artmaking and exhibiting.


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How to Cite
McGarryK. (2019). Multitextual Literacy in Educational Settings: Contextual Analysis and the Dab. Art/Research International: A Transdisciplinary Journal, 4(2), 480-504.