Within the DALN, individuals have represented themselves and their literacy practices and values in relation to parents and siblings at home (cf., Rebecca Moore Howard’s “Dysfunctional Family Literacy” and Karin Hooks’ “An Old Chalk Board”), members of national, ethnic, religious, disabilities, and/or class-based groups (see Saffiyah Madraswala’s “Literacy in Color: Saffiyah,” Debleena Biswas’ “A Toast to the Digital Literacy Narrative Archive: A Story of Coming to Wor(l)ds,” Jane Fernandes’ “Literacy Narrative of a Deaf Professor, and Laurence Jose’s “The Greek Story: Context, Literacy & Meaning”), teachers at school (Jacqueline Hick’s “C-OW!” and Scott DeWitt’s Staying in the Lines”), members of their social and familial groups or churches (see Jessica Lund’s “Competitive Reader” and Elaine Richardson’s, Beverly Moss’, and Valerie Kinloch’s Narrative of Three Professors”), and acquaintances in online environments (M.M’s “Literacy Narrative” and Joshua Bott’s “Nintendo and Beyond“), among many other choices.

This relational positioning frequently has a political dimension. In narrating their literacy stories within the DALN, individuals not only respond to the presence of a person who may be helping them record their stories (a companion, a technician, an interpreter, or an interviewer (see, for instance, Andrea Williams and Valerie Lee’s “Literacy Narratives of Two African American Professors,” Trena Shank’s “Literacy Narrative of a Deaf Graduate Student”), but they also often position themselves discursively with regard to people or groups represented as characters in their stories who either share—or do not share—their literacy experiences and values (see Rhonda Schlatter’s “Learning to Read and Write”), social situations (see Donna LaCourt’s “Ambivalent” and Moe Folk’s “No Access and a Bad ‘tude'”), and experiences (see Paul Heilker’s “The Eli Way”).

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[H]ow we represent ourselves in storied worlds depends on who we are trying to be in relation to others in the present. Though Miller and colleagues have focused their studies of narrative and identity on children, many of their claims seem to us applicable for older storytellers as well. Storied selves, as they suggest, are multiple and changing within contexts of activity and interaction.

(Hull and Katz, 2006, p. 44-45)