Mary Louise Pratt Contact Zone Essay

Mary Louise Pratt Contact Zone Essay-55
The strangeness of the environment, the differences in the national character of the two groups and the differences in the social and political institutions, were the few that played an im...A contact zone is the space in which transculturation takes place – where two different cultures meet and inform each other, often in highly asymmetrical ways.Compositionists have paved the way for understanding contact zones not just as spaces to observe and describe but also as spaces in which challenging learning and instruction can occur.

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Arts of the Contact Zone by Mary Louise Pratt In the Arts of the Contact Zone, Mary Louise Pratt has tried to explain the concepts of the “contact zone”, which she referred to as “the space of colonial encounters”.

This social space that she speaks about is a stage where “disparate cultures meet, clash, and grapple each other, often in highly asymmetrical relations of domination and subordination”.

These contexts are language diversity, history, orality, and power at more targeted and wider-ranging scales of focus.

Mary Louise Pratt famously described contact zones as “social spaces where disparate cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other, often in contexts of highly asymmetrical relations of domination and subordination—such as colonialism and slavery, or their aftermaths as they are lived out across the globe today” ( 7).

A space out of the comfort zone, a non-safe house, in which no voice or perspective is stifled and no single view is secure makes for powerful learning that is deep and meaningful.

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This is true not merely for those in the situation but also those of us studying the situation long after they occurred.

Pratt aims to highlight these relations between the colonizer and the colonized “in terms of copresence, interaction, interlocking understandings and practices”.

There often are conflicts of views and ideas; the very concept of existence maybe apprehended differently by the two involved subjects in the “contact zone”.

However, few widely used conceptual frameworks for literacy research articulate these principles.

To address this gap, I propose employing the linguistics concept of contact zones as a conceptual framework for literacy research because it foregrounds the contexts that have proven essential to literacy studies scholarship.

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