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ERIC Number: EJ1112274
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 21
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1535-0517
Claiming Their Voice: Sociolinguistic Factors Affecting Immigrant Workers' Ability to Speak Up
Gardner, Kathleen; Liu, Roseanney
CATESOL Journal, v21 n1 p45-65 2009-2010
Immigrants' multiple identities are sources of contention as they strive in the English-speaking workplace, where they need to meet job demands and demands from employers who expect them to conform to the culture of the management (Harper, Peirce, & Burnaby, 1996; Jacobson, 2003; Katz, 2000). With California having a significant immigrant worker population, this study investigated how many of these workers navigate multiple identity and cultural issues while attempting to use their learned English to claim their voice. In an adult ESL classroom, first qualitative data were collected from students' responses about a workplace scenario. Then, 3 individuals from the class were chosen for in-depth interviews to determine factors that contribute to or hinder their ability to stake their claim in the workplace and speak up for themselves. The study results showed that several sociolinguistic factors influence whether or not workers chose to speak up and that these factors are as pertinent as workers' linguistic proficiency and the types of employers and coworkers they have. The authors discuss pedagogical implications with the goal of empowering immigrants to claim their voice at the workplace.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California (Los Angeles)
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A