Literacy is officially banned, on penalty of death, for all bar Templars, Nobles and members of Merchant Houses.

Literacy (None; Trained Only)
The ability to read has been outlawed for thousands of years by the sorcerer‐kings. All characters in a Dark Sun campaign start without the ability to read or write, and must take ranks in Literacy in order to read anything.
Action: none.
Try Again: Not applicable. There are no Literacy checks to fail.
The Literacy skill works like the Speak Language skill.
Buying a rank in Literacy grants the ability to read and write a single language. Note that the ability to speak the language is not required.

The following details Athasian common languages and their alphabets.

Language Typical Speakers Alphabet
Aquan Water-based creatures Elven
Auran Air-based creatures, aarakocra Saurian
Common Humans, half-elves, half-giants Common
Druidic Druids (only) Druidic
Dwarven Dwarves, muls Dwarven
Elven Elves, half-elves Elven
Entomic Insectoid creatures, scrabs Kreen
Giant Giants Dwarven
Gith Gith Elven
Halfling Halflings Halfling
Ignan Fire-based creatures Saurian
Kreen Thri-kreen, tohr-kreen Kreen
Rhul-thaun Rhul-thaun Rhulisti
Saurian Jozhals, pterrans, ssurrans Saurian
Sylvan Druids, halflings Halfling
Terran Earth-based creatures, taris Dwarven
Yuan-ti Yuan-ti Saurian

In addition to the table above, each city‐state and Dynastic Merchant House has its own language, although merchant houses chiefly use it in cipher form. The following languages are considered dead and are restricted, at DM’s discretion: Bodachi, Draxan, Giustenal, Kalidnese, Rhulisti, Saragarian, and Yaramukite.

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