Understanding Afro-Caribbean Educators’ Experiences with Englishes across Caribbean and U.S. Contexts and Classrooms: Recursivity, (Re)positionality, Bidirectionality

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Englishes, Immigrant, Language ideology, Multicultural teacher education, Caribbean educators

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This interpretive qualitative study describes the experiences of six Afro-Caribbean multilingual educators with Englishes across Caribbean and United States contexts and classrooms. Findings showed how confidence vs. doubtfulness and resistance vs. acceptance seemed visible in the educators' use of Englishes based on the expectations of others and how distance vs. closeness and negative vs. positive feelings were reflected in educators' learning about their use of Englishes. Overall, the findings suggest that the educators' experiences were characterized by recursivity, repositionality and bidirectionality. Recursivity seemed evident because the educators moved back and forth in their thinking about Englishes, English ideologies, and between conflicts about these ideologies in their experiences across Caribbean and U.S classrooms. Repositionality seemed visible in their increasing acceptance of non-standardized Englishes for ‘outer circle’ classroom instruction and through shifts in their ideologies about English as moved back and forth across ‘inner’ and ‘outer circles,’ both via various digital technologies and by way of their physical movement across geographic boundaries. Bidirectionality appeared to be present in the impact of educators' ideologies about Englishes on ‘inner circle’ speakers, and the impact of ‘inner circle’ speakers' ideologies about Englishes on educators. This study raises questions about the ways in which educators' Englishes function as they interact with English speakers in the United States.

Citation / Publisher Attribution

Teaching and Teacher Education, v. 69, p. 210-222