Performative identity as a resource for classroom participation: Scientific Shane vs. Jimmy Neutron

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5 Scopus citations


This study introduces performative identity as a lens for understanding student participation in discursive classroom routines and potentials for fostering student agency and enhanced learning. We argue that student negotiation of performative identities can facilitate productive transformations of individual and group trajectories. This study illustrates the transitions that one student group makes as they engage a conventional classroom reflection activity across four weeks. The group leverages this recurring activity to enact a range of positions relative to each other and the normative discourses invoked by the activity. Using interactional evidence, we demonstrate how performative identities lead to the group engaging routine activities in authoritative and agentive ways.We further argue that examining group participation in light of performative identity productively frames opportunities to learn relative to institutional genres of schooling and what counts as knowledge.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)291-309
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Language, Identity and Education
Issue number5
StatePublished - Nov 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Classroom discourse
  • Identity
  • Marking
  • Positioning
  • Sociocultural theory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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