Investigating understandings of critical literacies among Finnish and Canadian teachers


  • Eleni Louloudi Bielefeld University


critical literacies, social justice education, teachers' perspectives, comparative education


Critical literacy has been defined as the use of analog and digital materials towards questioning and deconstructing problematic and oppressive societal norms and further reconstructing more socially just narratives. Even though critical literacy is a well-known concept in many English-speaking countries, its application and significance in Europe have not been sufficiently investigated. As a result, this dissimilar study of the concept can be reflected in teachers’ understandings of it in theory and in practice. This contribution focuses on exploring and reconstructing teachers’ perspectives of critical literacies comparatively. More specifically, the article highlights similarities and differences in the way teachers from Canada and Finland think of the definition and implementation of critical literacies in their own situated, socio-cultural and socio-educational contexts. The study is based on theory-generating expert interviews and a comparative case study design, and the analysis of the data follows a grounded theory framework. The main results show a considerable convergence in perspectives; while Canadian teachers explored connections of critical literacies with social justice education, Finnish teachers rather highlighted ideas of information management and multiliteracies. Nevertheless, there were noticeable connections among these perceptions which are relevant for the development of the field and are further explored in the discussion part of this article.

Special Issue: Language Education for Social Justice


2022-08-23 — Updated on 2022-10-05


How to Cite

Louloudi, E. (2022). Investigating understandings of critical literacies among Finnish and Canadian teachers. Apples - Journal of Applied Language Studies, 16(2), 57–76. (Original work published August 23, 2022)