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    The construction of Erasmus student identity: a discourse historic approach

    Strong, Dina (2019) The construction of Erasmus student identity: a discourse historic approach. Doctoral thesis, Birkbeck, University of London.

    Final draft of PhD thesis by DINA STRONG 10 10 2019.pdf - Full Version

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    This thesis examines the construction of a student mobility programme and mobile students’ identities in discourses of Erasmus exchange students (bottom-up discourses) and political speeches and institutional texts (top-down discourses). By adopting a post-modern perspective on identity and its construction in discourse, this study intends to fill the gap in the field of student mobility research, which has been predominantly concerned with North American, rather than European, or even less so with the Latvian context and has been mainly quantitative in nature, looking at large-scale statistical data, while overlooking the complexities and variation among individual experiences. The study applies the Discourse Historical Approach (DHA) to three sets of data: individual interviews with incoming Erasmus exchange students in Latvia, political speeches by the former EU Minister of Education, A. Vassiliou and online texts published on the web page of the Latvian State Education Agency. The results indicate that mobile European exchange students’ identities are constructed differently in institutional as opposed to the experiential contexts. It seems that on the one hand, Latvian institutional texts focus on building a positive representation of Latvia, characterised by openness and its affiliations with Europe and the world as the outcome of the Erasmus programme; the EU political discourse promotes the triumph of Erasmus as a European project, pointing to the vitality of the student mobility programme leading to an increase in the number of people with European identity as the actual proof of the programme’s success. Contrary to the institutional online texts and the Commissioner’s speeches, on the other hand, the Erasmus students indicate their awareness of the complex, multiple and changing nature of mobile students’ identities and their construction in discourse when faced with new contexts and diverse individuals.


    Item Type: Thesis
    Additional Information: Originally submitted to the Department of Applied Linguistics and Communication, School of Social Sciences, History and Philosophy.
    Copyright Holders: The copyright of this thesis rests with the author, who asserts his/her right to be known as such according to the Copyright Designs and Patents Act 1988. No dealing with the thesis contrary to the copyright or moral rights of the author is permitted.
    Depositing User: Acquisitions And Metadata
    Date Deposited: 28 Nov 2019 10:30
    Last Modified: 01 Nov 2023 14:13


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