Creating a Multivocal Self : Autoethnography as Method book cover
1st Edition

Creating a Multivocal Self
Autoethnography as Method

ISBN 9781138189850
Published July 27, 2016 by Routledge
218 Pages 54 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Showcasing a new methodology in language learning and identity research, this carefully conceptualized, innovative book explicates the use of autoethnography as a way of re-imagining one’s sense of linguistic and cultural identity. A key work for researchers and students in Applied Linguistics and Language Education, it addresses fundamental aspects of research methodology and explores substantive issues relating to individual dimensions of multilingualism.

Choi shows convincingly how the learning of a language is inseparable from one’s constant searching for a voice, a place, and a self in this world, demonstrating the importance of interrogating what lies behind everyday life events and interactions—the political and ethical implications of the utterances, thoughts, actions, and stories of the self and others.

Themes of authenticity, illegitimacy, power relations, perceptions of self/other, cultural discourses and practices, and related issues in multilingual identity development surface in the multi-modal narratives. Chapters on methodology, woven through the book, focus on the process of knowledge production, approaches to writing narratives, the messiness of research writing practices, and the inseparability of writing and research.

Table of Contents

Prelude: What’s in a name?

About This Book

Chapter 1 The Necessity of Feeling "Out of Place"

New York-Seoul-New York (1978-1992)

Chapter 2 A Critical Reflexive Narrative Account

Chapter 3 The Ordinariness of Polyphony

Beijing (1993-2000)

Chapter 4 Troubling Data

Chapter 5 Heteroglossic Becomings

Tokyo (2000-2007)

Chapter 6 Giving an Account of Oneself

Chapter 7 The Possibilities in Silence

Sydney (2007-2013)



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Julie Choi is Lecturer in Education (Additional Languages), Melbourne Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne, Australia.


"Extremely interesting and well researched, this book explores a key development of globalization: the mobility of people and its impact on the individual finding her place between languages and cultures. The author succeeds in presenting her arguments in a highly accessible style alternating between first-person narrative and discursive argumentation, which will no doubt appeal to a large audience in the fields of Applied Linguistics and Language Education. This is a milestone publication in the field of multilingualism, because it adds new aspects to understanding and thus conceptualizing the multilingual subject. With the radical focus on her personal experience and voice, the author makes dimensions of identity creation accessible—an approach that previous books have not taken into consideration."

Michael Legutke, Distinguished Senior Professor, Justus Liebig University Giessen, Department of English, Germany

"Innovative and pioneering in both research methodology and choice of research topic, this is the first book of its kind. Enchanting and ground-breaking, this authoethnography shows convincingly how the learning of a first/second/third/… language is inseparable from one’s constant searching for a voice, a place, and a self in this world."

Angel Lin, Professor, University of Hong Kong