Spring 2022

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Now showing 1 - 5 of 5
  • Publication
    Social Justice Must Be Defended: A Raciolinguistic Genealogical Exploration of Social Justice Discourse
    (University of Pennsylvania, 2022-01-01) Colby, Lauren P.
    Social justice discourse permeates many institutes of higher education. In the current study, I examine how a graduate school within an elite university uses social justice discourse and promotional tactics to demonstrate its commitment to improving its social justice goals. Using a raciolinguistic genealogical approach, I show how the school creates a normative subject-position, or way of being in the world, around social justice (Flores, 2021). I analyze the data using a critical discourse analytic approach informed by Anaïs (2013) and reveal ruptures within the normative subject-position. I conclude that the continued promotion of the school’s progress to improve racial and social justice depends on the repeated subjugation of marginalized students. This research serves as a case study that supports the work of researchers in higher education and educational linguistics who confront the lasting impact of white supremacy and global capitalism as they are reproduced in institutes of higher education.
  • Publication
    East and Southeast Asian Nations’ Preference for Native English Speakers: A Genealogical Investigation Through the English Language Teachers’ Job Market
    (University of Pennsylvania, 2022-01-01) Nguyen, Thao Phan Thu
    Although English is widely considered to be a global lingua franca, controversies about whether native English speakers should remain as the standard of English persist. These controversies maintain a potentially problematic hegemonic dominance of native English speakers established by inner circle English nations that affects outer circle ones in English language education. Using Critical Discourse Analysis and the raciolinguistic perspective, this research explores how East and Southeast Asia’s English teaching job market views and restructures the conceptualization of white native English speakers through English teaching job hiring websites and advertisements. The findings hope to expose evidence of East and Southeast Asia nations’ preference for native English speakers and marginalization of nonnative English speakers as a consequence of white settler colonialism and self-Orientalism’s constructed and institutionalized racial hierarchy.
  • Publication
    English-Learners as Subgroup: A Genealogical-Raciolinguistic Analysis of English Learners in the School District of Philadelphia
    (University of Pennsylvania, 2022-01-01) Negus, Sydney
    This paper is an analysis of the subject positions at play in School District of Philadelphia (SDP) discussions and policies around English learners (ELs) evident in a meeting of the Board of Education focusing on ELs in 2019, and in official district policy. The discourse of subgroups emerges as a primary theme, with ELs positioned by teachers, board members, and district employees as having lower achievement, and thus more needs, than other groups. Within this discourse, the EL population is further divided into sub-subgroups (such as long term ELs and newcomers), which are positioned as needing even more than other ELs. This positioning of ELs as a needy subgroup sits in tension with district-stated educational principles of avoiding deficit framing of any student. In this paper, I use genealogical raciolinguistic methods within a discursive approach to language policy to delineate the subject positions created in this subgroup discourse. Subject positions are considered from a raciolinguistic perspective, drawing on theories about biopolitics, diversity talk, and audit culture to argue that even when race is not explicitly discussed, EL subgroup discourse is still a continuation of a long history of positioning certain racialized groups of students as being unusually needy and in need of intervention within a broader educational hierarchy. The tensions inherent in the educational discourse of diversity-as-asset are also discussed in the context of ELs.
  • Publication
    Learning and Meaning Making in Online Tutoring with “Japanese Third Culture Kids”
    (University of Pennsylvania, 2022-01-01) Oyamada, Mami
    This study explores learning and meaning-making processes of transnationally mobile youth with ties to Japan (“Japanese third culture kids”) in online tutoring. Based on 2.5-month research from June to August 2020, I utilize a multidimensional, repertoire approach to classroom discourse analysis to investigate how four focal tutee-tutor pairs engage with one another and their learning. Informed by research on after-school educational spaces involving transnationally mobile youth and critical pedagogy, I argue that the tutoring sessions are co-constructed spaces in which interlocutors utilize their communicative repertoires, with emerging themes including mutual acknowledgement of “not knowing” in the L1/L2 and the potential of connection building between learning content and lived experiences. Findings lead to a discussion on the importance of self-reflexive practices, particularly for for-profit educational spaces.
  • Publication
    Under Biopolitics: The Discursive Construction of Homo Sacer as Refugees’ Identity
    (University of Pennsylvania, 2022-01-01) Jiang, Shiyu
    This paper aims at investigating the hidden rationale behind anti-refugee discourses through the lens of biopolitics and the notion of homo sacer. While homo sacer was previously linked with camps, whether it is concentration camps or refugee camps, I argue that in the current world, we need to extend homo sacer beyond the traditional definition of camps to fit in a broader context. I extend the argument by incorporating homo sacer with biopolitics/biopower to examine how these two terms interact to discursively co-construct refugees’ identity. Since refugee and anti-refugee discourses are not new terms or phenomena, but can be traced back in time, I adopted genealogy as my method to examine two sets of data. I first present data collected from newspaper archives on Jewish refugees during WWII. In particular, I focus on news reports on the ship St. Louis that was turned away by the Cuban and U.S. governments. I analyze how such action was backed by biopolitics and led to the establishment of homo sacer as the major makeup of Jewish refugee identity at that time. I then analyze data from Twitter posts between 2015 to 2020 to cover the time period after the Syrian refugee crisis and examine how these discourses are similarly informed by biopolitics. By comparing the two data sets, I argue that, as a special migrant population, refugees bear the identity of homo sacer which is discursively constructed by the public. While world governments have claimed refugee acceptance as a humanitarian act, refugees’ identity will remain unchanged from where it was decades ago as long as biopolitics still plays a role in refugee-related discourses.