On Language, Education and Identity: Minority Language Education Within the Canadian Context

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Title: On Language, Education and Identity: Minority Language Education Within the Canadian Context
Authors: Shadd, Deborah
Date: 2015
Abstract: “The destiny of a people is intricately bound to the way its children are educated” (RCAP 1996, v. 3: 404). Firm in this belief, the current study undertakes an examination of language and education policy in Canada, seeking to understand how these two factors together impact the formation of identity, not only for individual students in a classroom, but more broadly for the linguistic and cultural communities of which they are a part, as these struggle to establish a place for themselves within the country’s social sphere. Despite the rhetoric of multicultural equality which predominates in Canadian public discourse, the examination of a corpus of historical legislation, carried out within the framework of narrative theory and critical discourse analysis, plainly demonstrates a clear hierarchy of languages and cultures in Canada – established and enforced in law, rooted and reflected in social institutions, reinforced and replicated through formal systems of schooling. As a result, even as speakers of minority languages are taught as students that to achieve success in schooling, they must translate their speech, thinking, and ways of knowing into the language and manners of the majority, so as members of their communities do they learn that, in order to gain a place of full participation in society, they must also translate their ways of acting, of relating to others, and of being in the world. In short, they must translate themselves. Recognizing that students are in this manner transformed in the very movement between classroom and community; and that as these transformed students return to their communities, these are likewise impacted in terms of their sense of belonging in society; we seek to discern what new insights might be gained from the consideration of education in light of a translational paradigm, ultimately identifying three productive methods of entry into such critical reflection: through the variety of significant questions that are raised, through the consideration of specific theoretical concepts reassessed and applied anew, and finally through the reframing and retelling of narratives in translation.
URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10393/32777
http://dx.doi.org/10.20381/ruor-2675
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -
Traduction et interprétation // Translation and Interpretation - Publications
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