Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Dra. Alyssa G. Cavazos

Second Advisor

Dr. Randall W. Monty

Third Advisor

Dr. Mark Noe


The thesis is a theoretical and analytical perspective on the construction of American Linguistic Identity through a Nationalist lens. By re-theorizing the concept of the nation as a “text”, and nationalism as the “composition” of that nation, this work challenges the dominant historical American linguistic narrative. This narrative is informed by an American Linguistic memory that is based on an Anglo-Saxon linguistic hegemony throughout American history. American linguistic memory has perpetuated a tacit English-Only policy in higher education, primarily through first year college composition courses. The tacit English-Only policy has influenced educators’ perceptions of students in the composition classroom as native speakers of English. These perceptions, however, are problematic and fail to address the presence of students’ linguistic differences. Through a re-evaluation of the American linguistic narrative, we might begin to reconceive of current conceptions of language practices in the writing classroom.


Copyright 2016 Brittany N. Ramirez. All Rights Reserved.