Negotiating English-only gatekeepers: Teachers' agency through a public sphere lens

Manan, Syed Abdul and Channa, Liaquat Ali and David, Maya Khemlani and Amin, Muhammad (2021) Negotiating English-only gatekeepers: Teachers' agency through a public sphere lens. Current Issues in Language Planning, 22 (3). pp. 290-307. ISSN 1466-4208, DOI

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The study is underpinned by the public sphere paradigm, which emphasizes that language policy and planning (LPP) should be studied from the actual practices of local stakeholders/agents and communities within the local sites. This approach allows researchers to understand the complex, multilayered, and dynamic process of policy interpretation, appropriation, and implementation. The study draws on qualitative interviews with 12 English teachers from the elite English-medium schools to show how their agency and agentive responses to policy generate openings for transformative English teaching and learning practices. Agency refers to an individuals' capability to make difference to pre-existing state of affairs. The transformative acts entail teachers creating spaces for multiple languages, cultures, and identities despite strict constraints from the English-only gate-keeping regimes. Findings suggest that teachers who have critical consciousness, solid theoretical knowledge of bi/multilingual education, and critical awareness of LPP can often challenge institutional constraints to open meaningful `ideological and implementational spaces' (Hornberger, 2003) for multilingual pedagogies within the hard-core monolingual institutional environments. We sum up by emphasizing that the scale of these agentive actions may appear tiny and insignificant; however, these reflexive actions showcase substantial symbolic and ideological potential for an epistemic reorientation in the field of English language education.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Agency; Public sphere; Policy and planning; Critical Reflexivity; Critical consciousness
Subjects: L Education > L Education (General)
P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Divisions: Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic & International) Office > Asia-Europe Institute
Depositing User: Ms. Juhaida Abd Rahim
Date Deposited: 28 Mar 2022 04:28
Last Modified: 28 Mar 2022 04:28

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