Pluralizing has increasingly become a norm of cultural criticism, offering
a (literally, if not exclusively) nominal escape from totalization:
‘meanings’ not ‘meaning’; ‘histories’ not ‘history’; and, here, ‘literacies’
not ‘literacy’. The plural forms are neologisms perhaps (as my
spell-checker insists), but they are also registers of a discomfort with
nouns that imply a singularity of effect belied by the multiple activities
and agents that produce it. They mark the scholar’s resistance to monolithic
understandings of complex and various cultural phenomena.