Article published in:Positive synergies: Translanguaging and critical theories in education
Edited by Zhongfeng Tian and Holly Link
[Translation and Translanguaging in Multilingual Contexts 5:1] 2019
► pp. 29–48
La vida tiene muchas curvas [Life has many curves]
Contemplating a translanguaging praxis
In this article, a conceptual discussion grounded in our practice as educators and scholars we use a bilingual poem, collaboratively written by young people from Latinx immigrant backgrounds, as an entry point to engage with existing discussions among practitioners and scholars on connections between translanguaging and Freirean praxis, and more broadly, on translanguaging and its potential for social transformation. Grounding our discussion in our work at a bilingual community education non-profit organization that seeks to empower Latinx immigrants, we explore how we are developing translanguaging spaces for immigrant students and families, spaces guided by a collective vision of social transformation, through what we call translanguaging praxis. Through articulating this translanguaging praxis, we foreground the transformative potential of translanguaging. We argue that translanguaging is not only a political act but that it can also be a critical, rebellious and creative one through which educators, students and families can respond to dominant narratives on Latinx immigrants in the US, co-constructing counter-stories through which they express who they are from their own perspectives and in dialogue with each other.
Keywords: translanguaging, immigration, Latinxs, community education, Freire, social justice, counter-stories, praxis
Published online: 10 January 2019
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