Summary of the Article

Summary of the Article

of the Article

of the Article

Thearticle “Acquisition of literate discourse: Bowing before themaster?” was written by Lisa Delpit and published in the Theoryinto Practice in the year 1992. The main idea that is contained inthe article is that many educators have been made to believe thatpeople born into minority discourses cannot learn literacy equal tothose who are born into the dominant ones. However, Delpit (1992)give examples of successful students to show that standardized testsdo not necessarily show the literacy ability of individual students.

Delpit(1992) argues that many educators have failed to take someinitiatives to help students from the minority groups because theybelieve that discourses are learned through apprenticeship and cannotbe taught in a classroom. This pessimistic approach makes teachers ofliteracy feel powerless and impart a notion among students thatchange for a better literacy performance is impossible. Thesepessimistic educators also hold that students born into the minoritydiscourses experiences a lot of conflicts when trying to learn newdiscourses that are based on a completely different set of values.

However,Delpit (1992) identifies that student from the minority groups areable to overcome obstacles related to learning a new discourse iftheir teachers give them the support they require. Delpit (1992)gives the example of Clarence Cunningham, an African American, whoseclass succeeded because teachers dedicated themselves to teach themthe superficial aspects of literacy that are associated with themiddle-class and the subtle aspects that are associated with thedominant discourse. This is clear indication that discourses can belearned in class, as opposed to a misleading notion held by anyeducators that discourse can only be learned through apprenticeshipand in a social setting and through social institutions. Therefore,Delpit (1992) manages to counter many misconceptions that haveprevented teachers from adopting the necessary change in order toincrease the literacy competence of students from the minoritydiscourses.

Reference

Delpit,D. (1992). Acquisition of literate discourses: Bowing before themaster? Theoryinto Practice,31 (4), 296-302.