For the past 15 years a number of Australian systemicists have
been involved in engaging literacy debates. The first phase of
these involved discussions with progressive educators (advocates
of process writing and whole language in the Australian context).
A subsequent phase involved negotiations with critical theorists,
typically with gender and ethnicity as the focus of difference.
Most recently, mainstream Australian linguists have entered the
field for the first time.
Articles by Mark Durie and Frances Christie were published in The Age, Melbourne's broadsheet newspaper, in 1994; in addition we include letters by Jim Martin and Christian Matthiessen written in response to a prepublication draft of his article that Durie circulated earlier in the year.