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Old 06-17-2019, 03:10 PM
 
Location: Lexington, Kentucky
6,982 posts, read 3,995,499 times
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I had a neighbor many years ago who hand me the phone book and ask me to look up phone numbers for her....since she was in her 70's I just assumed she had problems with seeing/reading that so many people do when they age.

She was raising her Grandson at the time, and he went to school with my Son...the school one day called, and the teacher asked me if I knew that she could not read. Because she had signed a note sent home with an X, and he told her his Grandmother couldn't read or write. The teacher was
skeptical.

I asked her about it and she said she grew up in rural Georgia, and only went to the second grade
in school.

 
Old 06-17-2019, 03:22 PM
 
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The incidence of illiteracy and functional illiteracy is surprisingly high in the chemically dependent population and rising. So I've met many illiterate people but the figures are much more concerning today than when I retired.

You may have met illiterate people and been unaware. They have a number of methods they use to hide it.

Both problems exacerbate each other.
 
Old 06-17-2019, 04:00 PM
 
Location: On a Long Island in NY
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I have several friends who cannot read anything at all and they are in their late 20s and early 30s. They all have learning disabilities like ADD which I presume plays a role. They do have jobs, drive, etc. Their text messages and Facebook posts tend to have atrocious spelling but you can generally make out what they are trying to say.
 
Old 06-17-2019, 04:12 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheTimidBlueBars View Post
When I was a GED tutor years ago, I had students who were functionally illiterate - could read individual words or at least sound out the harder ones, but couldn't understand a full text. But never someone who couldn't read at all.
I did literacy tutoring and met both a mid-teen and a 20 year old who were illiterate.

I'm sure there are others...as I lived in WV and TN, but it would be hard to tell since we didn't write to each other! We banged nails and stuff like that so I wouldn't have known.
 
Old 06-17-2019, 04:14 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WIHS2006 View Post
I have several friends who cannot read anything at all and they are in their late 20s and early 30s. They all have learning disabilities like ADD which I presume plays a role. They do have jobs, drive, etc. Their text messages and Facebook posts tend to have atrocious spelling but you can generally make out what they are trying to say.
When we were hiring for sales for our little ma and pop operation, we gave a very short math test...like about 5th grade level stuff.

On candidate who has made it through the "talk" interview and handed us a nice Resume came back and the manager gave him the test. He looked at it and as soon as we turned our backs he bolted out the door!

Now, he probably could read....but he certainly didn't know how to multiply and divide.

As far as chemically dependents, I got the very best math lessons as a teen.......I could buy a 1/4 lb of weed and sell 3 oz and get the last one free. That took some good skills.

To this day I can walk into a mom and pop business and within 5 minutes come up with a basic idea of the amount of business they do in a day and whether or not they are making it. One local burrito place grosses 6K a day...that's amazing!
 
Old 06-17-2019, 06:02 PM
 
Location: Eugene, Oregon
9,145 posts, read 3,000,345 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C24L View Post
I had a girlfriend who could not read.

My first girlfriend was also illiterate. That was in Kindergarten. But she did speak three languages, one from her birth country and another from where her family had lived for two years, before coming here and adding English. But she was smart as a whip and was on the honor roll in high school. Within one month of arriving in our neighborhood, she went from knowing no English, to being able to carry on a conversation using it. Amazing how well a young mind can pick up such things, pointing out the importance of giving instruction in other languages at early ages.
 
Old 06-17-2019, 06:07 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
21,868 posts, read 14,364,134 times
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When I volunteered at a food pantry, talking with people who came monthly for food, I think I did run into a woman who could not read. I cannot remember the details though. I also talked several times with a man who had very poor reading skills.

Back in the 80s, we had an older gentleman do some upholstery work for us, who it appeared could not read street names. This came out as we were giving him directions, unsuccessfully, about how to get out of our subdivision.

Ages and ages ago, when I worked for a state agency, I remember interviewing a young man who could not read at all. This would have been 1971 perhaps. He was younger that I. I was shocked. (I had forgotten that encounter until just now.)
 
Old 06-17-2019, 06:37 PM
 
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I had posted what you see pasted in below into a past C-D thread titled "Have you ever met an illiterate person?" and my posting to that thread was dated as 3/1/2017:


If I remember their life stories and my interactions with them accurately while they were both still alive:

Both my PATERNAL GRANDMOTHER and my MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER had either no literacy or very low (barely functional) literacy, to my recall . . . though both their husbands were fully literate (or enough so) based upon what I think is my remembrances about them:

My PATERNAL GRANDMOTHER was born around 1893 in Eastern Europe and came to the USA as either a late teen or a young-20s woman but didn't seem to ever take it upon herself to learn to read or write in ANY language (unless my recall regarding her is a bit flawed) but her husband (my PATERNAL GRANDFATHER) could read and write enough so in multiple languages (English, Polish, Hebrew, and Yiddish) and they both were proprietors together in the restaurant business over 50-something years. She died in the early 1980s in her late 80s. She'd have her husband do ALL the shopping and other challenging tasks for both of them.

My MATERNAL GRANDMOTHER had a somewhat similar story to my paternal grandmother. That is, she was born around 1904 in Eastern Europe and came to the USA as either a late teen or a young-20s woman. She seemed to be able to look over printed or written materials (e.g., newspapers) and might have been able to grasp it at a basic level but she'd have my mother fill out forms for her, write lettters for her, et al. That is, I gauge that she couldn't really write English (though she learned how to write out her name legibly) and seemingly never took it upon herself to upgrade her literacy to a more fully functional level. She died in 1980 at around age 76.

And, over the decades (with me being in my 60s now) and having lived and traveled all over the USA over the decades of my life, I've met any number of transient/destitute/homeless persons or immigrants (whether legal or illegal) who, to my recollection, I picked up that they couldn't read or couldn't write or could neither read nor write at any functional level beyond the perfunctory (if at all).

It is a prevalent-enough phenomenon . . . more than one could imagine. Hard to believe yet true.
 
Old 06-17-2019, 06:45 PM
 
Location: Cebu, Philippines
4,392 posts, read 1,666,771 times
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Most Blacks in the South born before the 1940s. The janitor in my college dorm was very proud that a student had once shown him how to write his name.
 
Old 06-17-2019, 07:27 PM
 
15,182 posts, read 4,011,322 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cebuan View Post
Most Blacks in the South born before the 1940s. The janitor in my college dorm was very proud that a student had once shown him how to write his name.
Not according to all documents I was able to find........

(in the south)
"The black illiteracy rate continued to fall during the first half of the twen- tieth century, dropping to slightly more than 25 percent in 1920."

It fell very steeply from there and "blacks born in that time" would have been measured in 1950, when the rate was closer to 90 percent literate.

They speak of "9th grade education" in a lot of documents about the South (both black and white), but that is plenty of education enough to be literate.
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