Imagined Destinations: The Role of Subjectivity and Generative Potential of Lived Experiences in Adult English Learners' Paths to Fluency

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/593495
Title:
Imagined Destinations: The Role of Subjectivity and Generative Potential of Lived Experiences in Adult English Learners' Paths to Fluency
Author:
Palumbo, Christine
Issue Date:
2015
Publisher:
The University of Arizona.
Rights:
Copyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Abstract:
Focusing on a Vygotskian theory of cultural historical psychology, this dissertation features a narrative analysis to examine the role of subjectivity and the generative potential and agency manifested in Non Native English Speaking Teachers' (NNESTs) successful development of L2 (English) fluency. My research creates another view of a Vygotskian theory by means of the imagination. Building on a cultural-historical approach, I conducted a qualitative analysis of how these teachers' pathway to fluency evolved from their Imagined Destinations. This term is defined as a goal or objective in the mind of the learner that mediates, and is mediated by, his or her lived experiences. The concept I coin as Imagined Destinations surfaced in my three initial pilot cases and took shape while working with NNES Panamánian teachers, from the analysis of online survey data with 27 of these experienced teachers, and detailed case study analyses of the language learning of eight of these teachers. These data revealed how participants dynamically create and recreate their environments through agentive roles that support the transformation of their environments to advance their goals. These transformations have implications for how subjectivity, agency, and acquisition of the target language intertwine throughout the participants' lived experiences or pathways to learning, thus providing an additional way to look at subjects and subjectivities within a Vygotskian theoretical frame. The findings also indicate that teachers' language trajectories are continuous, emergent, and the result of taking on very deliberate ecological roles in their bilingual success despite recurring salient and limiting circumstances. These findings about the centrality of Imagined Destinations in learning "smudges" the perception that societal power outweighs the dynamic and agentive roles of individuals as active molders of their lives. Finally, this dissertation also seeks to enrich scholarship by demonstrating how NNESTs use their bilingual identities built from their trajectories to bilingualism as ways to influence and inspire their own students' second language learning.
Type:
text; Electronic Dissertation
Keywords:
Imagined Destinations; second language learning; sociocultural theory; subjectivities; Vygotsky; Second Language Acquisition & Teaching; cultural historical psychology
Degree Name:
Ph.D.
Degree Level:
doctoral
Degree Program:
Graduate College; Second Language Acquisition & Teaching
Degree Grantor:
University of Arizona
Advisor:
Tardy, Christine; Moll, Luis
Committee Chair:
Tardy, Christine; Moll, Luis

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.language.isoen_USen
dc.titleImagined Destinations: The Role of Subjectivity and Generative Potential of Lived Experiences in Adult English Learners' Paths to Fluencyen_US
dc.creatorPalumbo, Christineen
dc.contributor.authorPalumbo, Christineen
dc.date.issued2015en
dc.publisherThe University of Arizona.en
dc.rightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.en
dc.description.abstractFocusing on a Vygotskian theory of cultural historical psychology, this dissertation features a narrative analysis to examine the role of subjectivity and the generative potential and agency manifested in Non Native English Speaking Teachers' (NNESTs) successful development of L2 (English) fluency. My research creates another view of a Vygotskian theory by means of the imagination. Building on a cultural-historical approach, I conducted a qualitative analysis of how these teachers' pathway to fluency evolved from their Imagined Destinations. This term is defined as a goal or objective in the mind of the learner that mediates, and is mediated by, his or her lived experiences. The concept I coin as Imagined Destinations surfaced in my three initial pilot cases and took shape while working with NNES Panamánian teachers, from the analysis of online survey data with 27 of these experienced teachers, and detailed case study analyses of the language learning of eight of these teachers. These data revealed how participants dynamically create and recreate their environments through agentive roles that support the transformation of their environments to advance their goals. These transformations have implications for how subjectivity, agency, and acquisition of the target language intertwine throughout the participants' lived experiences or pathways to learning, thus providing an additional way to look at subjects and subjectivities within a Vygotskian theoretical frame. The findings also indicate that teachers' language trajectories are continuous, emergent, and the result of taking on very deliberate ecological roles in their bilingual success despite recurring salient and limiting circumstances. These findings about the centrality of Imagined Destinations in learning "smudges" the perception that societal power outweighs the dynamic and agentive roles of individuals as active molders of their lives. Finally, this dissertation also seeks to enrich scholarship by demonstrating how NNESTs use their bilingual identities built from their trajectories to bilingualism as ways to influence and inspire their own students' second language learning.en
dc.typetexten
dc.typeElectronic Dissertationen
dc.subjectImagined Destinationsen
dc.subjectsecond language learningen
dc.subjectsociocultural theoryen
dc.subjectsubjectivitiesen
dc.subjectVygotskyen
dc.subjectSecond Language Acquisition & Teachingen
dc.subjectcultural historical psychologyen
thesis.degree.namePh.D.en
thesis.degree.leveldoctoralen
thesis.degree.disciplineGraduate Collegeen
thesis.degree.disciplineSecond Language Acquisition & Teachingen
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Arizonaen
dc.contributor.advisorTardy, Christineen
dc.contributor.advisorMoll, Luisen
dc.contributor.chairTardy, Christineen
dc.contributor.chairMoll, Luisen
dc.contributor.committeememberTardy, Christineen
dc.contributor.committeememberMoll, Luisen
dc.contributor.committeememberAriew, Roberten
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