Competing and contested discourses of citizenship and civic praxis


  • Jill Koyama University of Arizona



citizenship, civics education, critical discourse analysis, youth


In this paper, I utilize complementary features of critical discourse analysis (CDA) and Actor-Network Theory (ANT) to trace and investigate issues of power, materiality, and reproduction embedded within notions of citizenship and civic engagement. I interrogate the often narrow and conservative political and public discourses in Arizona, as well as the xenophobic-driven civics education policy. To these, I juxtapose the enactment of citizenship by youth who use, produce, and share language materials and counter authoritative citizenship and civic discourses, especially, but not exclusively, in online contexts.  I explore the questions: In what ways are discourses of civic engagement and citizenship assembled, interpreted, understood, enacted, and contested in Arizona? What are the relationships between the civics education policy, discursive enactments of citizenship, and the youth of Mexican descent’s online civic practices? I draw on a mixture of textual (language materials) and discursive (events, acts, and practices) data collected in Arizona to argue that youth are doing critical, yet unrecognized and undervalued, forms of civic engagement online, which could be incorporated in the formal civics education curriculum.


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Author Biography

Jill Koyama, University of Arizona

Jill Koyama, an anthropologist, is Associate Professor of Educational Policy Studies and Practice and Teaching Learning and Sociocultural Studies at the University of Arizona. She is also a Faculty Affiliate in Graduate Interdisciplinary Programs in Social, Cultural and Critical Theory, Second Language Acquisition and Teaching (SLAT), and the Institute for LGBTQ Studies. Her research is situated across three integrated strands of inquiry: the productive social assemblage of policy, the controversies of globalizing educational policy, and the politics of immigrant and refugee education. 




How to Cite

Koyama, J. (2017). Competing and contested discourses of citizenship and civic praxis. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 25, 28.



Discursive Perspectives Part 2