“We txt 2 sty cnnectd”: An African American Mother and Son Communicate: Digital Literacies, Meaning-Making, and Activity Theory Systems

This research demonstrated how an African American mother and son communicated with each other via texting and instant messaging (IM) at home. Data from a 2007 larger ethnographic case study of a family’s digital literacy practices were collected and analyzed. Situated within the framework of New Literacy Studies and multimodality, this research explored: a) how and why an African American mother and son communicated through texting and IM, b) how this family drew on multimodal meaning-making resources, and c) how texting and IM between these family members demonstrated the potential to change the perceptions of literacy researchers regarding the dynamics of family structures.