The Native Speaker as an Othering Construct: Negotiating a Hybrid Third Space Identity Within a Binary Framework
Merecoulias, Maria Nectaria
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Within an English-speaking cosmopolitan context, the hybrid identity negotiations of 12 international people were examined. The purpose was to view the processes that influence participants’ perceptions and the positive attributes they associate with being in a third space. The understandings were organized under the categories: language, culture and identity. The most salient theory utilized is from Homi Bhabha’s The Location of Culture. Central texts include Canagarajah, Myhill, Bourdieu and Schecter among others. Analyses revealed that respondents’ ability to flexibly compartmentalize elements of diversity in language and culture allowed them to maintain a strong core identity. Findings elucidate the importance of choice in participants’ navigation of their third space identity, by using characteristics of hybridity to their advantage. By analyzing successful third space engagements, it maybe possible to transfer elements of individuals’ traverse to immigrant and refugee high school students struggling with acculturation.