Inventing Identities in Second Language Writing

Document Type

Grant Proposal

Date Accepted

Spring 2009

Project Description/Abstract

I applied for a small grant to support indexing fees for Reinventing Identities in Second Language Writing, a collection of original essays I have written a chapter for and am co-editing with Jay Jordan of the University of Utah, Christina Ortmeier-Hooper of the University of New Hampshire, and Gwen Gray Schwartz of Mount Union College, Ohio. This collection of research chapters and narrative essays explores how the identities of writers who use English as a second language are constructed by their readers, teachers, institutions, and themselves. There is a strong need in the field of composition studies for research that complicates the ways in which the field labels, and thereby constructs, identities of second language writers. Currently the field talks about second language writers in broad strokes, masking the rich multiplicity of identities that second language writers inhabit, invent, and revise as they compose. This collection challenges such simplifications by counterposing them both with researched chapters that investigate how second language writers invent and reinvent themselves through writing and with first-person essays by second language academics, who reflect on their ongoing journeys through identity formation. The spectrum of second-language experiences captured in the collection displays the richness and multiplicity of identity invention and reinvention; subjugation, negotiation and assertion; flexibility and rhetoricity.

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