Most research on the development of genre knowledge has focused on genre learning in either a first language (L1) or a second language (L2). This paper highlights the potential of a biliteracy perspective on genre research that combines insights from literacy and bilingualism in order to examine how multilingual writers develop and use genre expertise in more than one language. From a theoretical point of view, the theorization of genre and genre knowledge in composition studies has developed relatively independently from the theorization of language and language proficiency in second language studies. It is argued that conceptually untangling the interrelated nature of genre, writing, and language expertise is a prerequisite for understanding multilingual genre learning. Research on genre learning and genre variation across languages and within multilingual communities is then reviewed to shed further light on the interrelationship between genre and language knowledge empirically. Pedagogical implications for better addressing the needs of multilingual writers are suggested.

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Keywords Biliteracy, Common underlying proficiency, Communicative competence, L1/L2 writing development, Multilingual genre learning, Second language proficiency, Writing expertise
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.jslw.2010.12.006
Journal Journal of Second Language Writing
Citation
Gentil, G. (2011). A biliteracy agenda for genre research. Journal of Second Language Writing, 20(1), 6–23. doi:10.1016/j.jslw.2010.12.006