This talk draws on “raciolinguistic ” perspectives to explore how language and race were perceived, constructed, and invoked in a diverse urban elementary school in Los Angeles, California. Based on ethnographic and interactional data from a Spanish-English dual language classroom, the talk illustrates how “raciolinguistic ideologies” mediated the construction of racialized subjectivities and reified forms of language among a diverse group of multilingual children and their teachers. The dynamic translingual practices of these children are contrasted with the static notions of both language and race that predominate in the discourse around educational diversity. Foregrounding the relationship between language and racialization highlights the processes by which these children’s forms of semiosis were variously displayed, ignored, (mis)construed, and recruited in the construction of racialized identities. The talk concludes by addressing the role of an analytic focus on children’s linguistic practices and ideologies in the larger project of exploring and disrupting teachers’ perceptions of and encounters with students of color.
Ramón Antonio Martínez is an assistant professor in the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University. His research explores the intersections of language, race, and ideology in the experiences of students of color, with a focus on bi/multilingual Chicana/o and Latina/o children and youth.
Sponsored by the IHC’s Language, Interaction, and Social Organization Research Focus Group.