Writing and identity

Promoting critical discourse amidst double consciousness

Authors

  • Stephanie Gollobin Vanderbilt University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/wap.35316

Keywords:

English language -- study and teaching -- Foreign speakers, academic writing -- studying and teaching, Consciousness, Educational Sociology, Social justice -- praxis -- critical pedagogy, Title

Abstract

Using a multidisciplinary approach to social justice teaching, this article explores the often invisible impact of double consciousness on adult English language learners in the United States and provides examples of classroom practice that invite students to reflect on its effects. The experience of double consciousness is examined as it relates to English language learner identities. A Critical Language Awareness (CLA) framework and identity-conscious teaching practices are explored to encourage student participation and reflection. This approach, demonstrated through examples used in writing classes, encourages the exploration of identity in the face of oppression by interrogating social constructions and fiction and nonfiction stories containing connected themes. Three classroom lessons and consequent writing are analyzed with a critical discourse lens to examine student responses and reflections on language and identity. Student writing demonstrates that encouraging English language classes to interrogate the language of institutionalized inequity and identity formation can illuminate potential influences of double consciousness, which can empower students to think critically about their identities and choose whether to take steps to mediate the ways in which they could be affected by double consciousness.

Author Biography

Stephanie Gollobin, Vanderbilt University

Stephanie Gollobin is a Language Teaching Specialist at the Vanderbilt University English Language Center specializing in business English, legal English, English for the field of education, and English for academics and professionals. Gollobin earned her MAT TESOL from the University of Southern California. A former Fulbright Fellow, she has extensive experience teaching in the United States and Germany. Gollobin co-authored the ‘Supplement to Strong Inside,’ companion to the New York Times bestselling book Strong Inside, and has presented at regional, national, and international TESOL conferences, disseminating her action research regarding reading and writing instruction, identity formation, and social justice curricula.

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Published

2020-04-17

How to Cite

Gollobin, S. (2020). Writing and identity: Promoting critical discourse amidst double consciousness. Writing & Pedagogy, 11(3), 411-429. https://doi.org/10.1558/wap.35316