Diversifying academic communication in anti-racist scholarship: The value of a translingual orientation

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5 Scopus citations


This article develops a complex orientation to linguistic domination and resistance to demonstrate how academic communication can be diversified to facilitate anti-racist scholarship. While it draws from social sciences which provide complex theories of social structuration, it demonstrates how linguists can offer fine-grained analytical tools to track these processes across diverse scales of space, time, and institutions. The objective of this article is to introduce an orientation to language which goes beyond traditional reductive and overdetermined perspectives to accommodate its generative and resistant potential. It introduces translingual practice as accommodating the theoretical developments discussed, and demonstrates how methods of indexical analyses can help scholars study texts and communication across various spatiotemporal scales in achieving structuration. This approach is applied to the writing practice of African American scholar, Geneva Smitherman, to demonstrate how her anti-racist scholarship renegotiates established structures of academic communication and generates change. While this article will help applied linguists to develop an appreciation of writers and writing in constructing diversified academic communication, it can provide linguistic tools to social scientists for tracing the workings of structuration and change at diverse spatiotemporal and social scales of consideration.

Original languageEnglish (US)
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Cultural Studies
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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