World Literacy

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Discussions' started by Frank Sanoica, Sep 3, 2018.

  1. Frank Sanoica

    Frank Sanoica Veteran Member
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    My wife and I got into this one today. So, I thought I'd throw it out here. Where in the world would you expect to find the highest (or lowest) literacy rates? I guessed lowest, some African Countries. Chart too lengthy to copy, but I'll give it's link.

    Highest literacy rate in the world: claimed by North Korea! 100% literacy.
    Lowest: Niger, 19.1%

    I would like to see the chart described as a curve, but can do without it.

    See: http://world.bymap.org/LiteracyRates.html
     
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  2. Thomas Stearn

    Thomas Stearn Well-Known Member
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    You can actually see it as column chart if you click on the respective symbol on the right.

    It says "Literacy rates of the countries of the world" but actually leaves out First World countries. If those were included, it would then be "the world", wouldn't it? And, who knows, we might be in for some surprises, too?
     
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    Last edited: Sep 4, 2018
  3. Frank Sanoica

    Frank Sanoica Veteran Member
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    @Thomas Stearn
    I like your thinking processes, and wonder why my own lag so far behind. Illiteracy of course does not define "educational effectiveness", nor "wideness of school opportunity". Schooling in many countries may not yet be an option for many.

    Frank
     
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  4. Joe Riley

    Joe Riley Veteran Member
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  5. Beatrice Taylor

    Beatrice Taylor Very Well-Known Member
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    We had our day in the United States with Anti Literacy Laws in slaveholding states.

    The haves understood and feared the power of education over the have-nots.

    “Knowledge makes a man unfit to be a slave.” - Frederick Douglass
     
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  6. Bobby Cole

    Bobby Cole Veteran Member
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    In the U.S., it’s interesting that compulsory education didn’t make it’s appearance until Massachusetts made it a law in 1852.
    Apparently there was a two-fold reason for it: 1. Obviously to teach young ones to read, write and cipher mathematics and 2. To prevent parents from allowing their children to be used in labor or using their children on farms and in factories.

    The law was so strict that if parents didn’t abide by the law they would get a pretty hefty fine or even lose their children. The children would be taken away from their parents and placed in a home whereby one’s education was of primary importance.

    So, in regard to laws which forbade slaves from being educated, there was no law in any state up to 1852 that mandated that ANYONE needed an education.
     
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  7. Beatrice Taylor

    Beatrice Taylor Very Well-Known Member
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    Bobby, you may be correct that laws did not prohibit slaves from learning but some laws did clearly list punishments for people that employed them as scribes or attempted to teach them to read and write.

    • 1819, Missouri: Prohibited assembling or teaching slaves to read or write
    • 1829, Georgia: Prohibited teaching blacks to read, punished by fine and imprisonment
    • 1832, Alabama and Virginia: Prohibited whites from teaching blacks to read or write, punished by fines and floggings
    • 1833, Georgia: Prohibited blacks from working in reading or writing jobs (via an employment law), and prohibited teaching blacks, punished by fines and whippings (via an anti-literacy law)
    • 1847, Missouri: Prohibited teaching blacks to read or write.
     
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  8. Bobby Cole

    Bobby Cole Veteran Member
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    I think you misread my post Beatrice. I agreed that there were indeed laws prohibiting slaves from receiving an education but at the same time, there were no laws until 1852 which mandated that even white people had to have one.
    In many cases, it was the illiterate enslaving the illiterate..............
     
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  9. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Greeter
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    Different countries use different methods of determining literacy. Some countries, with only one official language, will test literacy based on fluency in that language only; someone who is fluent in another language will be considered illiterate. Still others have multiple official languages, and there are those that consider fluency in any language. Plus, of course, the actual testing will differ from one country to another. It is also quite likely that, just as Kim Jung-un scored a perfect score on golf the one time that he played the game, they probably cheated on their literacy standards.
     
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  10. Martin Alonzo

    Martin Alonzo Veteran Member
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    I have a little trouble believing some of these graft. I live in the Dominican Republic as you know by these list the D.R. has 91.8%.
    A year or two back the government put a big drive on literacy they had education classes and at the end they showed a big demonstration of people receiving their diplomas. A news media was there interviewing some of the people getting diplomas. The reporter went down the line asking why the people were there most said they did not attend any classes but where told if they showed up gave their name and excepted a diploma they would receive money. I wonder if they were in the 91.8%
     
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  11. Don Alaska

    Don Alaska Very Well-Known Member
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    I think nations SHOULD have one or two official languages in which to conduct business. Can you imagine being tried by a jury that couldn't communicate? California prints ballots in several languages, which, to me, indicates that there are citizens with obligations or citizenship who cannot converse with one another.
    https://ballotpedia.org/California_Voter_Guide_(official)

    I think almost all countries have official languages, Canada two, and I think Switzerland three. China has one official language that everyone has to conduct official business in, although the nation's everyday business is conducted in many languages and dialects. I think literacy should be determined by competency in the official language(s). I had never met an illiterate person until I went into the Navy. Everyone that I had ever come into contact with could read and write. I was at one point in charge of getting some of these people through training, and realized the obstacles they face in life. When my wife was in the hospital for our first childbirth experience, her roommate was nearly illiterate. She was 14 and her husband was 17 and supported his family as a dishwasher in a local restaurant. They could not read the hospital menu beyond a few words like "egg" and "milk", so my wife would read the menu choices to them and then mark the menu with the choices they made. We found it so sad....

    When I lived in Japan, one of my friends there told me that the U.S. was only 70% literate. I didn't believe it then, but when I look at who is elected to government positions in this country, I now wonder if it is even that high.
     
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