Producing and disseminating marginalized knowledge through students’ drawings, videos and crafts

Eleni Katsarou and Konstantinos Sipitanos

Punctum, 5(1): 92-113, 2019
DOI: 10.18680/hss.2019.0007


Can multimodality contribute to the social inclusion of all students and to fostering of a democratic culture in educational settings characterized by major population movements and relevant social changes that usually promote racism and exclusion? In this paper, we argue that multimodality, especially its social semiotic approach (Kress, 1995, 2009; Kress & van Leeuwen, 2001; van Leeuwen, 2005), is not just another necessary addendum to the curriculum for “new learning” (adjusted to the needs of contemporary societies and new technologies). More importantly, it can offer democratic ways to produce, distribute and disseminate knowledge. Having worked with the Knowledge Democracy initiative (Sousa Santos, 2018) in an Erasmus+ Project called Backpack-ID, developed as a bottom-up innovation in participating schools, we demonstrate, through specific examples, that the students’ drawings and digital storytelling can create prospects for social inclusion for all students in the classroom. More specifically, we try to show, in detail and through instances of practice, how a classroom, as a multi-semiotic space, can become a democratic space founded on the inclusion of diverse histories, memories, languages, identities and epistemologies.

KEYWORDS: multimodality, multimodal literacy, multiliteracies, knowledge democracy, students’ social inclusion, narratives, digital storytelling
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