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ERIC Number: EJ1081794
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Dec
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0042-0859
Beyond "Acting White": Affirming Academic Identities by Establishing Symbolic Boundaries through Talk
Olitsky, Stacy
Urban Education, v50 n8 p961-988 Dec 2015
This article investigates interactional processes by which students from non-dominant groups develop academic identities within schools that privilege the dominant group. It draws on an ethnographic study of an urban magnet school, focusing on a discourse analysis of conversations between 3 eighth-grade girls. Findings include that students supported their academic identities through strategically establishing symbolic boundaries between academic content and the standards by which they were judged. Overall, this study explores the ways in which students exercise agency as they develop symbolic boundaries that are more complex than the binary "white" versus "nonwhite" to attain identity-related goals.
SAGE Publications. 2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320. Tel: 800-818-7243; Tel: 805-499-9774; Fax: 800-583-2665; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Grade 8; Junior High Schools; Middle Schools; Elementary Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation (NSF)
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: REC0107022