Constructing a Multicultural National Identity: South African Classrooms as Sites of Struggle between Competing Discourses

J. Keith Chick
2002 Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development  
This article reports on aspects of an ethnographic study carried out in six newly integrated schools in post-apartheid South Africa. It presents evidence that these schools are sites of struggle between competing discourses that construct, maintain, and change social identities in those communities and the wider society. It suggests that South Africa's former limited bilingual policies and current multilingual language policies together with discourses at the micro-level that are congruent with
more » ... are congruent with them serve to construct quite different South African national identities: hegemonic, exclusive, and conflicted on the one hand, and egalitarian and inclusive on the other. Finally it speculates on the outcome of the struggle between the competing discourses effects on the prospects of South Africans being able to negotiate a truly multicultural national identity.
doi:10.1080/01434630208666480 fatcat:lckq3cnronavbi6it3kswzcaua