Author Information

Autumn Strickland


In this article, I explore the connections between linguistic anthropology and education through a summer course at Bridgewater State University (BSU) framed by Laura M. Ahearn’s Living Language: An Introduction to Linguistic Anthropology (2021) as well as my personal experiences in courses at BSU and my 2021 summer internship at a private school focused on students with learning disabilities. The purpose of this article is to highlight some of the ways in which both education courses and educational experiences in the field unknowingly reproduce western ways of thinking and being, specifically in terms of language use and ideologies. To frame these observations, I utilize linguistic terms discussed throughout my course and Ahearn’s own observations in the field. I conclude with suggestions for both professors and educators in the field to create a decolonizing classroom focused around linguistic and racial equity and justice.

Note on the Author

Autumn Strickland completed a Bachelor of Arts in Cultural Anthropology with a minor in Special Education in August 2021 and plans on entering graduate school at BSU for Severe Special Education. Currently, Autumn works full time in a private school for children with Autism and developmental disabilities. This article was written under the mentorship of Dr. Diana J. Fox, Professor and Chairperson of the Department of Anthropology. Autumn grew up in Abington, Massachusetts, and currently lives in Bridgewater, Massachusetts as she pursues her education and career. She also loves to travel and plans to see more of the world to gain new points of view to bring back to her classroom in the future.

Rights Statement

Articles published in The Undergraduate Review are the property of the individual contributors and may not be reprinted, reformatted, repurposed or duplicated, without the contributor’s consent.