Shared Territory: Understanding Children's Writing as Works

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Shared Territory brings together Patricia Carini's concept of the developing child as a 'maker of works' and Bakhtin's theory of language as dialogism in order to re-examine our assumptions about how to define written language development and how to understand it. Centring on Carini's claim that projects and artefacts of all kinds, from crayon drawings by children to letters and diaries by adults, are the objectified workings of the human mind enabled by and through cultural practices of signification, Himley argues that children's texts are a 'shared territory', in which writer, reader, and language itself all dwell and participate in the making of meaning.