Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

Language Socialization Practices and Cultural Identity: Case Studies of Mexican-Descent Families in California and Texas

Sandra R. Schecter and Robert Bayley
TESOL Quarterly
Vol. 31, No. 3, Language and Identity (Autumn, 1997), pp. 513-541
DOI: 10.2307/3587836
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3587836
Page Count: 29
  • Download ($14.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Language Socialization Practices and Cultural Identity: Case Studies of Mexican-Descent Families in California and Texas
Preview not available

Abstract

This article explores the relationship between language and cultural identity as manifested in the language socialization practices of four Mexican-descent families: two in northern California and two in south Texas. The analysis considers both the patterns of meaning suggested by the use of Spanish and English in the speech and literacy performances of four focal children as well as family and dominant societal ideologies concerning the symbolic importance of the two languages, the way language learning occurs, and the role of schooling-all frameworks in which the children's linguistic behaviors were embedded. All four focal children defined themselves in terms of allegiance to their Mexican or Mexican American cultural heritage. However, the families were oriented differently to the Spanish language as a vehicle for affirmation of this commonly articulated group identity. The differences are emblematic of stances taken in a larger cultural and political debate over the terms of Latino participation in U.S. society. Parents in all of the families endorsed Spanish maintenance and spoke of the language as an important aspect of their sense of cultural identity. Only two of the families, however, pursued aggressive home maintenance strategies. Of the other two families, one used a protocol combining some Spanish use in the home with instruction from Spanish-speaking relatives, whereas the family that had moved most fully into the middle class was the least successful in the intergenerational transmission of Spanish, despite a commitment to cultural maintenance.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
513
    513
  • Thumbnail: Page 
514
    514
  • Thumbnail: Page 
515
    515
  • Thumbnail: Page 
516
    516
  • Thumbnail: Page 
517
    517
  • Thumbnail: Page 
518
    518
  • Thumbnail: Page 
519
    519
  • Thumbnail: Page 
520
    520
  • Thumbnail: Page 
521
    521
  • Thumbnail: Page 
522
    522
  • Thumbnail: Page 
523
    523
  • Thumbnail: Page 
524
    524
  • Thumbnail: Page 
525
    525
  • Thumbnail: Page 
526
    526
  • Thumbnail: Page 
527
    527
  • Thumbnail: Page 
528
    528
  • Thumbnail: Page 
529
    529
  • Thumbnail: Page 
530
    530
  • Thumbnail: Page 
531
    531
  • Thumbnail: Page 
532
    532
  • Thumbnail: Page 
533
    533
  • Thumbnail: Page 
534
    534
  • Thumbnail: Page 
535
    535
  • Thumbnail: Page 
536
    536
  • Thumbnail: Page 
537
    537
  • Thumbnail: Page 
538
    538
  • Thumbnail: Page 
539
    539
  • Thumbnail: Page 
540
    540
  • Thumbnail: Page 
541
    541