Language socialization in the internationally adoptive family : identities, second languages, and learning
Fogle, Evelyn Wright.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Georgetown University, 2009.; Includes bibliographical references.; Text (Electronic thesis) in PDF format. Language socialization research, or the study of how children and other novices are socialized through language and to use language, has long acknowledged that socialization is a bidirectional process (Ochs, 1988; Ochs & Schieffelin, 1984; Schieffelin & Ochs, 1986); however, relatively few studies directly address the ways in which novices socialize experts in interaction and how socialization processes are collaborative and co-constructed. The current study begins to fill this gap by examining interactions in three internationally adoptive families where native English-speaking parents have adopted children at school age from Russian-speaking regions. Specifically, I show how school-age children play a role in shaping family discourse by resisting, eliciting, and negotiating narrative routines, language-related episodes, and language choice in interaction with their parents.; Three adoptive families (10 adoptees, aged 4-17, and 5 adults) participated in the study. Each family consisted of English-speaking parents and at least one Russian-speaking child adopted at the age of five or older. Each family self-recorded mealtimes and other family interactions (e.g., literacy events, carpool, and game time) for six months, recording a total of about 25 hours of interaction. Regular interviews were also conducted with family members. Data from each family were considered individually as a part of a collective case study and were analyzed longitudinally to identify patterns of interaction in each family's conversations.; Findings from this study contribute to an understanding of how second language learners actively shape their learning environments at the same time that they take on interactional roles and construct identities. By viewing learning as a process of participation and identity formation, I conclude that for the international adoptees socialized in middle-class American families in this study, learning encompasses not only acquiring linguistic, pragmatic, and sociocultural knowledge, but also how to take on agentive roles in obtaining and negotiating such knowledge, which can have implications for classroom second language learning. The study further examines differences in routine talk about the day and spontaneous narratives, the social functions of language-related episodes, and relationships between language competence and language negotiation.
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