Assistant Professor of Academic Literacy and Linguistics
Borough of Manhattan Community College, CUNY

Thursday, September 23, 4:00pm – 5:30pm

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My project will use a raciolinguistic approach to examine how heritage language instruction among Filipino Americans engages wider U.S. racial logics of diversity and multiculturalism. Diversity and multiculturalism are liberal democratic ideologies of difference that demand from minoritized groups the successful co-management of linguistic and cultural assimilation and performances of authenticity (Reyes 2002; Rosa 2019; Delfino 2020). At different times, Filipino Americans have either been a “model minority” (Wu 2002; Reyes & Lo 2009) or racialized as a “problem population” like Latinxs or Blacks (Rosa 2019; Delfino 2020), both, or neither. Like other immigrant groups, Filipino Americans have disproportionately suffered from racial stigma and systemic exclusion (Nadal 2011; Maramba & Bonus 2012) while also being positioned as racial Others who are understood to have “lost their culture,” i.e., to have assimilated too much or to have become “too white,” via a process of language loss (Osalbo 2011; Ocampo 2016). I argue that because their experiences of Spanish and U.S. colonialism and migration to the United States are so unique but understudied, Filipinos’ racial positioning merits critical investigation as an oversight in the study of multilingualism.