Institutional representations of 'Spanish' and 'Spanglish': managing competing discourses in heritage language instruction
Showstack, Rachel E.
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Rachel E. Showstack, Institutional representations of ‘Spanish’ and ‘Spanglish’: managing competing discourses in heritage language instruction. Language and Intercultural Communication, Vol. 15, Iss. 3, 2015
This case study examined how one instructor navigated between two competing discourses in an intermediate Spanish heritage language (HL) classroom: on the one hand, teaching 'Standard Spanish' to help students achieve professional success, and legitimizing home linguistic practices on the other. In addition to expressing both perspectives directly through overt language, the instructor also represented them through indirect representation of stances toward the context, toward ways of using language, and toward other speakers. She did this by moving in and out of her language teacher role and thus constructing different social contexts in the classroom, by displaying positive and negative affective stances toward features of local varieties of Spanish, and by constructing stances of authority based on knowledge of 'correct' Spanish in some moments, and based on her own experiences as a bilingual in others. The study findings contribute to an understanding of the role of US educational institutions in the construction of ideologies about Spanish and provide information that can be used to improve HL instruction.
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