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Celebrate with me: a black adolescent girl’s speculative multimodal design of intersectional college and career futures

Jennifer D. Turner (Department of Teaching and Learning, Policy and Leadership, University of Maryland at College Park, College Park, Maryland, USA)

English Teaching: Practice & Critique

ISSN: 1175-8708

Article publication date: 13 June 2023

Issue publication date: 31 July 2023

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to demonstrate how Alayah, a 16-year-old African American girl, leverages multiple expressive modes for intersectional self-representation as speculative design. Here, speculative design refers to a multimodal composition (i.e. digital collage) which leverages multiple expressive modes for intersectional self-celebration in possible futures.

Design/methodology/approach

Informed by intersectional multimodal literacy frameworks and analyses, this paper addresses the question, “How does Alayah represent her college and career futures in her speculative multimodal design? To address this question, the author analyzed Alayah's digital collage using an intersectional multimodal analysis template complemented by a thematic analysis of her interview data and the narrated explanation of her collage.

Findings

In a speculative design composed of 15 images and words, Alayah agentively determined and critically celebrated her intersectional college and career futures through four interrelated themes: Black girl affirmation; Collegiate success; “Sweet” work; and Black livingness.

Originality/value

By centering Black girls’ speculative multimodal designs in college and career curricula, ELA educators (re)imagine college and career pedagogies to critically celebrate Black adolescent girls as intelligent, empowered and literate young women worthy of the futures that they desire.

Keywords

Citation

Turner, J.D. (2023), "Celebrate with me: a black adolescent girl’s speculative multimodal design of intersectional college and career futures", English Teaching: Practice & Critique, Vol. 22 No. 3, pp. 271-284. https://doi.org/10.1108/ETPC-10-2022-0153

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2023, Emerald Publishing Limited

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