‘I already have a culture.’ Negotiating competing grand and personal narratives in interview conversations with new study abroad arrivals

Amadasi, S. and Holliday, A. (2017) ‘I already have a culture.’ Negotiating competing grand and personal narratives in interview conversations with new study abroad arrivals. Language and Intercultural Communication. pp. 1-16. ISSN 1470-8477.

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Abstract

In an interview with a postgraduate student about her intercultural experience of recently arriving for study abroad, it was found that the two researchers and the student were engaged in a mutual exploration of cultural identity. The in- terview events became conversational and took the form of small culture formation on the go in which each participant employed diverse narratives to project, make sense of and negotiate expression of cultural identity. The stu- dent shifted between personal narratives drawn from her particular cultural trajectories and splintered from grand narratives of nation and global position- ing, between non- essentialist threads and essentialist blocks. The researchers learned from her and intervened to facilitate shifts to non-essentialist threads, drawing on narratives from their own personal cultural trajectories, but some- times also falling into essentialist blocks splintered from grand narratives. The roles of ideology and competing essentialist and non-essentialist discourses of culture were implicit in these negotiations, as were the personal agency of the student as she responded to the constraining conflicts, structures and hierarchies encountered through the events she spoke about. Rather than providing a picture of intercultural assimilation and integration, interculturality is revealed as a hesitant and searching negotiation, sometimes of vulnerability, wrong-footedness and occasional assault on identity.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
L Education > L Education (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Arts and Humanities > School of Language Studies and Applied Linguistics
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Prof Adrian Holliday
Date Deposited: 25 Aug 2017 14:10
Last Modified: 25 Aug 2017 14:14
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/16254

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00