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This subject introduces students to the ways in which language indexes and constructs identities in social contexts. It introduces students to a range of theoretical approaches, and the distinctive research methodologies associated with each. These include language socialization. studies of language in social interaction using the techniques of Conversation Analysis and discourse analysis (including critical discourse analysis). and poststructuralist approaches to language and subjectivity. Topics covered will include gender-related language use, language and racism, language and sexuality, the negotiation and deployment of identities in face-to-face interaction, and the way language and discourse construct and maintain a sense of "otherness". On completion of the subject, students should be able to recognise ways in which language and discourse construct particular social identities of relevance to themselves, and critically analyse ways of thinking about the complex phenomenon of language and identity.
Intended learning outcomes
On successful completion of this subject, students should:
- be able to think critically and in theoretical terms about possible relationships between language and identity;
- be able to analyse and critically evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of a variety of approaches to investigating such relationships, and position themselves within theoretical debates within this field;
- have positioned themselves towards the broader implications of research in language and identity for issues in gender, ethnicity, sexuality, racism and nationalism;
- be able to confidently deploy discipline specific research skills using primary and secondary sources and empirical data with a strong sense of research ethics and intellectual integrity;
- have attained advanced abilities in writing and other modalities;
- have consolidated their understanding of social and cultural diversity in the university and wider community.
At the completion of this subject, students should:
- be able to communicate intelligibly and economically their understanding of debates within this area;
- understand the social and cultural context of the construction of identities in and through language.
Last updated: 30 July 2023