This past May, staff of the Digital Archive of Literacy Narrative (DALN) at The Ohio State University (and in conjunction with Georgia State University) released to the public former U.S. President Jimmy Carter's digital narrative.
DALN is a publicly available archive of personal literacy narratives in a variety of formats (text, video, audio) that together provide a historical record of the literacy practices and values of contributors, as those practices and values change. It is intended as a resource for students, teachers, and scholars interested in how we learn to read, write, and make meaning of the world around us.
Carter’s contribution is significant not only because of his contribution to history as an American president, but also because it comes at the same time the DALN reached a milestone of 6,000 submissions. Other significant contributors to the literacy archives include: U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown; former Ohio State President, E. Gordon Gee; and Columbus, Ohio Mayor Michael Coleman, not to mention British spy novelist Frederick Forsyth and U.S. figure skating champion Rachael Flatt.
According to DALN project co-director Ben McCorkle, associate professor of English who teaches courses in composition, rhetoric, literary publishing, and digital media at Ohio State Marion, the project goes well beyond just archiving individual stories.
“The ultimate goal, said McCorkle, is to create this ongoing sustainable collection of how people learn to read and write. Its value lies in its ability to continue growing, because each new submission adds to a data set that can help us better understand how we learn literacy skills, the kinds of things that motivate or discourage us when learning.”
To learn more about DALN and to read the full narrative, please visit osumarion.osu.edu.