Bridging the Chasm in Languaging and Literacies: The Flourishing Imperative

Patriann Smith

In a world challenged by the mandate to advance educational equity for the well-being of all children and families, the future of many remain at stake. To achieve well-being, the dichotomies that continue to exist between “academic” and “invisible” literacies as well as between “academic” and “home” language must be bridged to re-instantiate “linguistic innocence,” a concept explored in the forthcoming book “Black Immigrant Literacies: Translanguaging Imaginaries of Innocence” (Cambridge University Press). Literacies and languaging (i.e., Englishes) of Black Caribbean youth’s transnational experiences, both in the Caribbean and in the United States, provide an avenue to recognize pathways that support this instantiation for all children and youth. Invoking linguistic innocence can bridge the chasm in languaging and literacies that has for too long focused on ‘success’ and can signal instead, liberatory promise via a transition towards ‘flourishing’.