Bookish Topic Tuesday – International Literacy Day 2014

Bookish Topic Tuesday

International Literacy Day 2014

Yes I know it’s Monday, but I thought I’d be early because today is International Literacy Day, organised by UNESCO. The day is to recognise the fact that there’s over 700 million people who are illiterate, with over 65% of them female. Considering this blog relies upon the fact that people are literate, I thought it important to highlight this date, and the work still to be done. I can recognise the power of literacy, it means a lot more than being able to read the latest Game of Thrones novel, a person’s whole life can be changed. Improve literacy and you can see improvements, in health, peace, gender equality, empowerment, the environment, poverty, and so much more. This year’s theme is Literacy and Sustainable Development.

UNESCO Literacy Infographic (click to view)

It is pleasing to note that the youth literacy rate is 5% higher than the adult rate, but it’s still not quite 90%. And there are still a number of countries where more than half of the population are illiterate. We must congratulate the effort, because in 1990 there were 76% literacy, and now it is up to 84%. But there is a lot of work yet to be done. I feel quite lucky to have been born in a country where literacy is high (so much so we take literacy for granted), since it enabled me to have to so many opportunities, like this blog.

Feel free to donate to UNESCO here, to support them in their work to increase worldwide literacy. And support literacy in your own community, go to libraries, make sure they survive, read to your children (if you have them) and read yourself.

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One thought on “Bookish Topic Tuesday – International Literacy Day 2014

  1. “Reading is a complex cognitive process of decoding symbols in order to construct or derive meaning (reading comprehension). It is a means of language acquisition, of communication, and of sharing information and ideas. Like all language, it is a complex interaction between the text and the reader which is shaped by the reader’s prior knowledge, experiences, attitude, and language community which is culturally and socially situated. The reading process requires continuous practice, development, and refinement. In addition, reading requires creativity and critical analysis. Consumers of literature make ventures with each piece, innately deviating from literal words to create images that make sense to them in the unfamiliar places the texts describe. Because reading is such a complex process, it cannot be controlled or restricted to one or two interpretations. There are no concrete laws in reading, but rather allows readers an escape to produce their own products introspectively. This promotes deep exploration of texts during interpretation.[1] Readers use a variety of reading strategies to assist with decoding (to translate symbols into sounds or visual representations of speech) and comprehension. Readers may use context clues to identify the meaning of unknown words. Readers integrate the words they have read into their existing framework of knowledge or schema (schemata theory).”
    – Wikipedia

    Three cheers for literacy!

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