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Tracked identities, resistance, and cultural production of yeongpoja : critical ethnography of tracked… Byean, Hyera 2017

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Tracked Identities, Resistance, and Cultural Production of Yeongpoja:  Critical Ethnography of Tracked English Classes in a Korean Middle School   by  Hyera Byean  M.A., University of Wisconsin-River Falls, 2011  A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE AND POSTDOCTORAL STUDIES (Language and Literacy Education)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver)  May 2017  ©  Hyera Byean, 2017 ii  Abstract In South Korea, English is implicated in local political processes, mediating relations of class and social (re)production (Park, 2013). Unequal access to English restricts the prospects of the disadvantaged in education and the job market (Kubota, 2011). Tracking, an institutional practice which groups students by performance, is one way in which these inequalities manifest in the neoliberalized landscape of Korean education. Situated within the frameworks of cultural production (Willis, 1977, 2004) and language socialization (Duff & Talmy, 2011), this critical ethnography explores the language learning trajectories of ninth-grade students in a Korean school over one semester who have been tracked since entering middle school. Classroom interactions and interviews are analyzed using critical discourse approaches (Talmy, 2010a).   This study finds that teachers oriented to the significance of English in high-stakes exams, and naturalized tracking to provide students appropriately leveled lessons. However, their beliefs about homogenously-constituted tracks steered them to conflate students’ language competence with track categories and prevented them from attending to the multiple levels and needs of learners within each track. More importantly, there were very few differences in the instructional materials used across tracks because teachers based their lessons on the same textbook in preparation for the same tests. Consequently, many students, regardless of track, deemed tracking unconducive to learning, engaging in acts of resistance to grammar-translation-oriented classroom practices.  Nevertheless, students displayed disaffiliative stances towards detracking out of concerns of being held back or tacitly positioned as having deficits. In this sense, this study argues that socialization into tracking led students to track not only their abilities but also their habitus (Bourdieu, 1990) and identities. Such tracked identities created conditions to reinforce a school iii  hierarchy in which many low-track students were discursively co-produced as yeongpoja, i.e., students who have given up on English.  This study demonstrates that the yeongpoja identity is a consequence of socialization into low tracks, manifesting students’ resistance to their stigmatized identities as well as the test-oriented instructional practices. The study concludes with a call for reexamining tracking, suggesting implications for instruction which integrate and recognize the needs, interests, and knowledge of students from diverse backgrounds.         iv  Preface This study has undergone an ethical review process which was approved on January 9, 2015 by the University of British Columbia Behavioural Research Ethics Board. The Human Ethics Certificate #H14-03136 for “Critical ethnography of tracked Grade 9 English classrooms: Class, identity and L2 learning in a Korean middle school” expires on September 17, 2017.  This dissertation is original, unpublished and independent work of the author, Hyera Byean.  v  Table of Contents Abstract .......................................................................................................................................... ii Preface ........................................................................................................................................... iv Table of Contents ...........................................................................................................................v List of Tables ................................................................................................................................ ix List of Figures .................................................................................................................................x List of Abbreviations ................................................................................................................... xi Abbreviated References to Data ................................................................................................ xii Acknowledgements .................................................................................................................... xiii Dedication .....................................................................................................................................xv Chapter 1: Situating the Study .....................................................................................................1 1.1 Introduction ................................................................................................................. 1 1.2 Background to the Study ............................................................................................. 2 1.2.1 Significance of South Korea as a Research Site ..................................................... 4 1.2.2 My Motivation and Positionality for the Study: Why I Am Doing This ................ 6 1.3 Situating the Study within a Social Practice Paradigm ............................................. 10 1.4 Conceptualizing a Key Term: Social Class .............................................................. 11 1.5 Research Questions ................................................................................................... 18 1.6 Structure of the Dissertation ..................................................................................... 19 Chapter 2: English, Tracking and Neoliberalization of Education in Korea .........................21 2.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................... 21 2.2 The Sociolinguistic Context of South Korea and Language Ideologies ................... 21 2.2.1 The Ideological Construction of English: A Genealogy of English Education .... 22 2.3 Locating English within Neoliberal Reforms of Education: Focusing on Tracking 24 2.3.1 English, Tracking and the Neoliberalization of Education ................................... 26 2.4 Tracking as a Worldwide Phenomenon: A Literature Review ................................. 31 2.4.1 Tracking Research in Education: Identity, Resistance and Cultural Production .. 33 2.5 Conclusion ................................................................................................................ 40 Chapter 3: Theoretical Frameworks ..........................................................................................41 3.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................... 41 3.2 Cultural Production Approaches to Education ......................................................... 42 3.2.1 Theories of Social and Cultural Reproduction ...................................................... 43 3.2.2 Theories of Cultural Production............................................................................ 46 3.3 Language Socialization Approaches to L2 Learning ................................................ 50 3.4 Conceptualizing Ideology, Identity and Agency ...................................................... 54 vi  3.4.1 Ideology ................................................................................................................ 54 3.4.2 Identity and (Un)Markedness ............................................................................... 56 3.4.3 Agency and Resistance ......................................................................................... 58 3.5 Conclusion ................................................................................................................ 60 Chapter 4: Methodology and Methods ......................................................................................62 4.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................... 62 4.2 Locating Critical Ethnography within the Study ...................................................... 62 4.2.1 Critical Ethnography in Education and L2 Learning ............................................ 63 4.2.2 Conceptualizing Critical Ethnography as Praxis .................................................. 64 4.3 Research Context, Participants and Methods: The School and Its Social Actors ..... 66 4.3.1 Negotiating Entry .................................................................................................. 66 4.3.2 SunnyHill Girls’ Middle School ........................................................................... 71 4.3.3 Participants: The Three English Teachers and Students ....................................... 74 4.3.4 Positioning Myself in SunnyHill .......................................................................... 75 4.4 Performing Critical Ethnography: The Procedures of Data Generation ................... 77 4.4.1 Participant Observation ......................................................................................... 79 4.4.2 Fieldnotes .............................................................................................................. 83 4.4.3 Audio-Recorded Classroom Interaction ............................................................... 84 4.4.4 Interviews .............................................................................................................. 86 4.4.5 Questionnaires....................................................................................................... 90 4.4.6 Artifacts and Documents....................................................................................... 90 4.5 Interpreting and Representing Data .......................................................................... 91 4.5.1 Data Management ................................................................................................. 91 4.5.2 Transcription and Translation ............................................................................... 92 4.5.3 Critical Discourse Analysis................................................................................... 94 4.5.4 Issues about Trustworthiness and Representations ............................................... 97 4.6 Conclusion ................................................................................................................ 98 Chapter 5: Multiple Discourses and Local Practices of Tracking ..........................................99 5.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................... 99 5.2 The Neoliberal School Hierarchy and SunnyHill ..................................................... 99 5.2.1 SunnyHill Identity: A “Rotten” School .............................................................. 100 5.2.2 Negotiating the “Rotten” School Identity through Tracking .............................. 101 5.2.3 SunnyHill Education Visions and Tracking ....................................................... 104 5.2.4 The (In)Visibility of Social Class ....................................................................... 110 5.3 Performing Tracking at SunnyHill.......................................................................... 114 5.3.1 Track (Re)Arrangement and Its Criterion ........................................................... 114 5.3.2 Incommensurability of Tracking and Learning Community .............................. 117 5.3.2.1 Learning Community as a Technique ......................................................... 118 5.4 Conclusion .............................................................................................................. 121 Chapter 6: Ideologies and Neoliberal Socialization at SunnyHill .........................................122 6.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................. 122 6.2 Ideologies about English at SunnyHill ................................................................... 123 6.2.1 The Ideology of Necessitation ............................................................................ 123 6.2.2 The Myth of Communicative Competence ......................................................... 128 6.2.3 The Myth of Cosmopolitanism ........................................................................... 130 vii  6.3 Ideologies about Tracking at SunnyHill ................................................................. 134 6.3.1 Students’ Beliefs about Tracks and Their Members ........................................... 135 6.3.1.1 Discourses about the High-Track Category and Its Members .................... 135 6.3.1.2 Discourses about the Low-Track Category and Its Members ..................... 141 6.3.2 Teachers’ Beliefs about Students, Tracking and Classroom Practices ............... 149 6.4 Conclusion .............................................................................................................. 152 Chapter 7: Low Track and Cultural Productions of Yeongpoja ...........................................154 7.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................. 154 7.2 Ms. Jang’s Low-Track Classroom Practices ........................................................... 154 7.2.1 The Focus and Instructional Patterns of Ms. Jang’s Class.................................. 155 7.2.2 Ms. Jang’s Beliefs about Low-Track Students ................................................... 158 7.2.3 The Students in Ms. Jang’s Class ....................................................................... 160 7.3 The Joint Production of the Low-Track Learner Identity ....................................... 162 7.3.1 Teaching to the Test: Exclusion, Resistance and Accommodation .................... 163 7.3.2 Resisting Low Expectations by Self-Positioning as Yeongpoja ......................... 177 7.4 Negotiating the “Non-Negotiated” System of Classroom Control ......................... 184 7.4.1 Accommodating Disciplinary Practices: “Playing” Compliance ....................... 184 7.4.2 Group Work as an Individual Practice ................................................................ 188 7.4.3 Achieving Distinction: Track Crosser’s Identity Work ...................................... 192 7.5 “Unmotivated” Yeongpoja vs. “Motivated” Yeongpoja ......................................... 198 7.6 Conclusion .............................................................................................................. 201 Chapter 8: High Track and Entrepreneurial Self for Distinction .........................................203 8.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................. 203 8.2 Ms. Yoon’s High-Track Classroom Practices ........................................................ 204 8.2.1 Ms. Yoon’s Class: Her Beliefs about English and Instructional Focus .............. 204 8.2.2 The Students in Ms. Yoon’s Class ...................................................................... 208 8.3 Neoliberal Subjectivity as a Resource for Distinctions .......................................... 209 8.3.1 “This is the High-Track Class” ........................................................................... 210 8.3.2 “Sleep or Wake Yourself Up”............................................................................. 215 8.3.3 Commodifying Subjectivity and SKY Elitism ................................................... 221 8.3.4 Self-Manage Your Study Time ........................................................................... 225 8.4 Reinscribing Distinctions: Hazing Events .............................................................. 230 8.5 A Post Note: Care Ethics in Education ................................................................... 235 8.6 Conclusion .............................................................................................................. 238 Chapter 9: Discussions and Implications .................................................................................240 9.1 Introduction ............................................................................................................. 240 9.2 Overview of Chapters and Recapitulations of Findings ......................................... 240 9.3 Discussion of Contributions of the Study ............................................................... 247 9.3.1 Contributions to Theory ...................................................................................... 247 9.3.2 Contributions to Methods ................................................................................... 249 9.3.3 Contributions to the Literature: Tracking and L2 learning ................................. 250 9.4 Implications of the Study ........................................................................................ 253 9.5 Limitations and Directions for Future Research ..................................................... 262 9.6 Epilogue: Critical Ethnography as a Starting Point ................................................ 263  viii  References ...................................................................................................................................266 Appendices ..................................................................................................................................300  ix  List of Tables Table 2.1 Yearly Ratio of Tracking Practices in Middle & High Schools Nationwide................ 31 Table 4.1 Track Combinations and Teacher Assignments ........................................................... 75 Table 4.2 Methods and Sources of Data ....................................................................................... 78 Table 4.3 A Summary of Interview Data ...................................................................................... 88 Table 5.1 Background Information Regarding Students in Each Track ..................................... 110 Table 7.1 The Make-up of the Students in Ms. Jang's Class ...................................................... 162 Table 8.1 The Make-Up of the Students in Ms. Yoon’s Class ................................................... 209  x  List of Figures Figure 2.1 Discourse about NAEA ............................................................................................... 29 Figure 4.1The Floor Plan of SunnyHill English Only Zone ........................................................ 73 Figure 4.2 Semiotizing Koreanized Expressions as Broken English ........................................... 73 Figure 5.1 The 2015 Students’ Participation Rate in Shadow Education by Monthly Family Income......................................................................................................................................... 112 Figure 7.1 The Low-Track Seating Arrangement for the First Half of Term 1 ......................... 161 Figure 8.1The High-Track Seating Arrangement for the First Two Weeks ............................... 208  xi  List of Abbreviations CE CA EFL Critical Ethnography  Conversation Analysis  English as a Foreign Language  IMF International Monetary Fund KMOE KTU Korean Ministry of Education  Korean Teachers’ and Education Workers’ Union  LC Learning Community  LS L2 MCA NGO Language Socialization   Second language  Membership Categorization Analysis  Nongovernmental organization  OECD Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development  SES Socioeconomic status  TEE Teaching English in English only  TOEIC Test of English for International Communication WHO World Health Organization           xii  Abbreviated References to Data Fieldnotes  Examples: (a) (Hfnmarch06)    (b) (Mfnjune23)    (c) (Lfnapril11)  Track location Fieldnote Month Date (a) (b) (c) H (high track) M (middle track) L (low track)  fn  (fieldnote) May June April  06 23 11   Classroom data   Examples: (a) (Hjune03:33-35)    (b) (Mmarch12:101-106)    (c) (Lmay25:234-245)  Track location Month Date Microsoft Word line number  (a) (b) (c) H (high track) M (middle track) L (low track)  June March May 03 12 25 33-35 101-106 234-245  Interview data   Examples: (a) (I1:23-25)    (b) (I2: 11-16)    (c) (UI1: 34-43)   (d) (UI2: 66-89) I1 I2 UI1 UI2 23-25/ 11-16/ 34-43/ 66-89 The first formal interview The second formal interview The first unstructured  interview The second unstructured interview Microsoft Word line number   xiii  Acknowledgements The long and endless journey of Ph.D. could not have been possible without the support and patience of many. My heartfelt thanks first go out to my co-supervisors, Drs. Ryuko Kubota and Steven Talmy, and my committee member, Dr. Patricia A. Duff. I am deeply indebted to each of you for granting me an opportunity to learn and practice under your supervisions and for guiding me to become an ethically responsible researcher, scholar, and teacher. Their critical insights helped sharpen my thinking and beliefs throughout this doctoral journey. I would also like to express my sincere gratitude to university examiners, Drs. Lee Gunderson and Wendy Poole, a chair, Dr. Donald Baker, and an external examiner, Farahnaz Faez for supporting my oral defense. I have been extremely fortunate to work with the amazing thesis committee.  I would also like to extend my thanks to all the participants who graciously welcomed me into their lives and spaces and allowed me to conduct this ethnographic study, which is still uncommon in Korea. I sincerely appreciate them for sharing with me their stories and insights and for letting me observe their classroom practices for six months. My deepest thanks also go to my students and fellow teachers in Korea. Without their support, this study would have been impossible.   I am also very grateful to my fellow graduate pals. Special thanks go to my study buddies, Jeongja Kang and Hyejin Lee, who shared with me insights, concerns and challenges not only as mothers but also as professionals engaged in Korean education. I would like to acknowledge Dr. Ee-Seul Yoon for her intellectual and spiritual guidance. Also, I would like to convey many thanks to my cohorts, Ava Becker, Natalia Balyasnikova, Victoria Surtees, Christine Bridge, Claire Ahn, Lisa Chang, Angela Moon, and Sara Davidson, and LLEDers, Tomoyo Okuda, Bong-gi Sohn, Won Kim, Ryan Deschambault, Junghyun Hwang, Ismaeil Fazel, Harini xiv  Rajagopal, Jun Ma, Assadullah Sadiq and others, for their encouragement, inspiration, and a piece of smile, whenever I was having a hard time with my study.     Last but certainly not least, I am eternally grateful to my family, especially my late mother, Moonja Heo, my father, Chungwoong Byean and my two brothers, Haewon Byean and Haewook Byean, for all of their love, support, and faith. 엄마, 아빠, 그리고 오빠들, 끝까지 저의 꿈을 믿고 응원해줘서 고마워요. My heartfelt thank-you goes to my daughter, Jaeyeon who has been my best friend, study buddy, and soul mate. Jaeyeon, what could I possibly have done without you? You showed me unwavering trust in me even at times when I began to lose confidence in myself. I hope that we keep our close friendship and achieve many more of our dreams together in the years to come. 고마워, 딸아, 그리고 사랑해. 네가 내 딸이라 참 좋다.      xv  Dedication To the memory of my mother,  Heo, Moon-Ja, 1  Chapter 1: Situating the Study 1.1 Introduction Neoliberalism is an economic doctrine that “ontologizes the global market logic” (Rizvi & Lingard, 2010, p. 32). With an emphasis on individual freedoms and entrepreneurial skills, it promotes not only the corporatization of the state through deregulation, privatization, and devolution for minimal government, but also the corporatization of individuals vying for their personal branding (Giroux, 2008; Harvey, 2005). Since the 1980s, many countries have been subsumed by the term “globalization” and have headed in this direction through the implementation of neoliberal reforms in various social sectors, particularly in education, where market-based policies have intensified competition among social actors and ascribed success or failure to personal virtues (Apple, 2006; Dolby et al., 2004; Flores, 2013; Urciuoli, 2010).  The impacts of neoliberal globalization have included a greater recognition of English for global communication and economic progress. Such beliefs attribute exchange value to English and help to build the myth that English will guarantee material gain and social inclusion (Block, Gray, & Holborow, 2012; Blommaert, 2009; Cameron, 2005; Holborow, 2015; Kubota, 2015; H. Shin & Park, 2016). Accordingly, many governments in English as a Foreign Language (EFL) contexts have facilitated English education by promoting English-mediated instruction, hiring native-speaking English teachers and tracking students by competence. Thus far, however, little ethnographic research has been undertaken in EFL K-12 settings (e.g., De Costa, 2011; Duff, 1995; K. S. Lee, 2014; Lin, 1999). Given the significance of English in local education and job markets, EFL classroom research is crucial to help illuminate how English as an integral part of neoliberal projects mediates relations of class and affects students’ identities, investment, and aspirations throughout the processes of second language socialization. 2  In this light, this critical ethnographic study drew on  theories of cultural production (Dolby et al., 2004; Giroux, 1983b; Levinson et al., 1996) and second language socialization (Duff, 2002, 2003, 2008b; Duff & Talmy, 2011) and examined the language learning experiences of ninth-grade EFL learners in a Korean public middle school for one semester; the learners had been sorted into high, middle and low tracks according to their academic performance on school-based assessments. Particular attention was paid to capture the complexity of local practices surrounding English in relation to macro-level policies. Many tracking studies have asserted that tracking has contributed to a reproduction of the wider social hierarchy, and this study also reached to similar conclusions. However, through a close analysis of classroom interactions, this study illuminated how English education polices in which communicative competence figures prominently ran into conflict with local practices and how the meritocratic logic underlying tracking obscured different affordances, resources and  access to English learning that hinges on students’ socioeconomic and sociocultural backgrounds.  In the next section, I locate English as an integral part of neoliberalism and discuss the significance of South Korea as a research site in exploring tracking and the politics of English education. I then delineate my background and motivation for the study. This is followed by describing the ontological and epistemological stances I take over the course of the study. Having clarified the notion of social class, I pose the research questions which guide this study.   1.2 Background to the Study In South Korea, English is deeply implicated in local political landscapes and neoliberal practices, mediating relations of class and social (re)production (Jeon, 2012a; J. S.-Y. Park, 2011, 2013; Piller & Cho, 2013). Having prioritized the development of competitive global citizens in the global market, the government has placed English at the very core of Korean education. As a 3  result, some parents send their children to privileged English private institutes or English-speaking countries to give them a head start in English language learning, consequently triggering a socioeconomic polarization with English at its core or a so-called “English divide” among students from diverse backgrounds (Byun & Kim, 2010; H. Park, 2014; J. S.-Y. Park, 2013; H. Shin, 2014). As such, being a (neoliberal) global citizen is very much aligned with the aspirations of the middle and upper middle classes as it requires certain levels of symbolic capital (Apple, 2001; Block, 2014; Bourdieu, 1986).  In this respect, it is inevitable that unequal access to English restricts the prospects of the disadvantaged in the neoliberal education market (Kubota, 2011; J. S. Park & Wee, 2012). Tracking is one way in which this unequal access manifests itself in Korean society. “Tracking” is the process whereby students are grouped and taught by their purported abilities (Gamoran, 2010; Oakes, 1985). It is intended to create conditions in which teachers can offer efficient instructions to meet students’ needs. Contrary to its rationale, however, tracking has been met with limited success and vehemently criticized as non-egalitarian because it tacitly segregates students by class, race, ethnicity and linguistic capital (Callahan, 2005; Gilbert & Yerrick, 2001; Harklau, 1994b; Ireson & Hallam, 2009a; Y. Kim, 2012; Lucas, 1999; Page, 1991).  In Korea, tracking was firmly prohibited in 1974 by the enactment of an equalization policy or pyeongjunhwa (평준화) in order to preclude overheated competition in the private education market and to enhance educational equity among students from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds (H. Park, 2007). However, debate about tracking and curriculum differentiation began anew during Kim, Yeong-sam’s regime (1993-1997) on the grounds that curriculum commonization failed to serve the needs of high-performing students, thereby impeding the enhancement of their competitive edge in the global market. Despite strong opposition to its 4  focus on high-performing students and educational excellence, thirty years after its abolition tracking became officially reinstated in 2008 and enforced from Grade 7 to 12 in English and mathematics, both of which play a crucial role in Korean college entrance exams. Under the name, sujunbyeol (수준별, by ability) idong (이동, moving) sueop (수업, class) (KMOE, 2008a), the government differentiated its ability grouping from tracking, which segregates students based on the total score of all subjects for an academic year. However, Oakes (2014) argues that “what some schools call ability grouping often amounts to tracking under a more acceptable name” (p. 204). In this vein, Mickelson and Everett (2008) refer to ability grouping as “neo-tracking”.   While the equalization policy is gradually being dismantled through neoliberal educational reforms, tracking has become increasingly entrenched. Furthermore, research shows that low-track classes are often assigned to inexperienced instructors (E. Yoo, 2013), thus raising questions about the equality of educational opportunity. The preceding discussion compellingly shows how neoliberal projects and the significance of English mediate relations of class and perpetuate the hegemonic ideologies of English. For this reason, the role of tracking in English education requires more in-depth scrutiny into the processes that affect students’ identities, investment and aspirations throughout language socialization in Korea.  1.2.1 Significance of South Korea as a Research Site Some researchers have surmised that tracking might work effectively when it is tied to meaningful incentives such as high-stakes exams and access to jobs along with applying a common curriculum regardless of tracks (Ayalon & Gamoran, 2000; Broaded, 1997; Gamoran, 1996, 2010; Stanley & Maccann, 2005). South Korea is a country which has demonstrated the highest degree of educational expansion, achievement, and investment among OECD nations (H. Park, 2007). The remarkable degree of educational expansion, academic elitism tied to 5  prestigious schools or hakbeolism (학벌이즘), neoliberal reforms in education, and high-stakes exams, make South Korea an important site for examining the effects of tracking on students and teachers. Moreover, curriculum commonization is another distinctive feature of Korean tracking practices. Regardless of track locations, students are asked to take the same paper-and-pencil tests two times per semester. These teacher-created summative tests consist of multiple choice, sentence-level writing or cloze questions and are assessed in a norm-referenced fashion whereby students’ scores are interpreted with reference to the performance of other students. Along with these test results, students are also evaluated by performance-based assessments such as classroom attitude, classroom participation and homework. These English grades determine students’ tracks within a school as well as between schools.   Much of the Korean research on tracking has been large or small-scale quantitative studies, sometimes including interviews with teachers and students (Baek, 2011; Hwang, 2014; Y. Kim, 2012; Y.-M. Kwon, 2005; S. Park et al., 2005; Y. Sung, 2008; Yang, 2006); some of these studies argue that tracking has widened the academic gap between students across tracks. For example, Y. Sung’s (2008) and Baek’s (2011) studies based on longitudinal data demonstrate that tracking promoted the self-efficacy of high-track students at the cost of the self-efficacy of middle-and low-track students, having no or less contribution to the enhancement of low-track students’ academic achievements. If tracking aims to close the academic gap between students, Baek (2011) argues for “detracking” by placing struggling learners into higher tracks.  In terms of the effects of tracking on English learning, Y. Kim’s (2012) research shows that only high-level students respond positively, indicating a studious environment in higher tracks. Nonetheless, the findings demonstrated that one of the common concerns for all groups was that they did not experience much difference in lessons because materials covered across 6  tracks did not differ. In this light, Y. Kim (2012) maintains that although 85% of the teachers in her study responded that tracking allowed them to provide appropriately leveled lessons to students, the majority of them also agreed on the benefits of tracking as illusive because of Korea’s test-oriented education system. High-stakes exams and competition also echo Hwang’s (2014) quantitative research. Owing to a competitive disposition, “a tendency to put a high value on competition and getting ahead of others, as well as being afraid of falling behind” (p. 146), it was found that tracking was not necessarily effective for high-track students who were under pressure and tension out of the fear that they might move downward into lower tracks. Hwang then concludes that “the competition-oriented atmosphere prevalent in Korean society may serve as a socio-cultural condition to prevent ability grouping from achieving its intended goals” (p. 146; see also Y. Kim, 2012; Ryoo, 2008).  While there are ample quantitative studies on tracking in Korea, to my knowledge, there has been no ethnographically-designed research which undertakes microanalysis on classroom interactions. For a more nuanced understanding of the institutional process of cultural (re)production, what counts is a close examination of the cultural politics of English tracks in terms of what actually takes place within them (Duff & Talmy, 2011; Pennycook, 2001). In this respect, this critical ethnographic study on the experiences, dilemmas and struggles of EFL students and teachers within the Korean tracking system will allow for a better sense of what consequences the neoliberalization of education has on students as well as teachers, thereby engaging in the creation of inclusive policies and pedagogies.  1.2.2 My Motivation and Positionality for the Study: Why I Am Doing This In designing critical ethnography, Madison (2012) encourages researchers to self-pose the following questions: “what are we going to do with the research; who ultimately will benefit?; 7  who gives us the authority to make claims about where we have been?; how will our work make a difference in people’s lives?” (p. 8). In this section, hence, I address these questions by elucidating my motivation and positionality as a teacher-turned critical ethnographer. I was once a staunch advocate of tracking. As a representative of the Provincial Office of Education, I participated in national tracking-promoting conferences and presented to other English teachers in my province on tracking as an alternative strategy to narrow the gap of English competence among students from diverse backgrounds. My credentials, bolstered by several awards, in particular two first place awards from Teaching and Research competitions, enabled me to heighten the legitimacy of tracking when speaking with local teachers. Since 2000, I have taught English in public middle schools, and I still hold my teaching position in South Korea. At the beginning of my career, tracking had not yet been implemented nationwide, and it was in 2007 when I first learned about the tracking policy. After first hearing the rationales being put forth for tracking, I thought that it might be an efficacious strategy to support low-achieving students, and that belief drove me to become an advocate.  However, it took me less than one semester to realize my naivety and to start questioning the justifications for tracking. No matter how hard I tried and no matter what activities I utilized, motivating low-track students was still challenging. In response to my agony over their non-participation, what one of my low-track students once told me is indelibly etched into my mind: “Teacher, don’t bother. We are low track1 and will be so always” (쌤, 너무 힘 빼지 마요. 우리는 하반이잖아요. 여기서 못나가요). It seemed that their placement into the bottom rung track had negative influence in shaping their subjectivities and identities. Moreover, tracking did not                                                  1 In Korean, students equate themselves with their tracks and thus refer to themselves as a high track, middle track or low track, rather than a certain-track student. For example, na (나, I) ha-ban (하반, low track) i-ya (이야, am). Accordingly, their track becomes their learner identity.   8  always benefit even the high-track students. Except for exceptionally high-performing students, many students were self-conscious about social comparisons within the high-track classroom, showing a sense of insecurity that they might move down to lower tracks. In some cases, students refused moving into the high-track class despite their eligibility.   I was not the only person who had been confronted with these dilemmas. One day after class was over, I ran into a colleague in a school hallway. After teaching a low-track English class, she was on her way to a teacher’s office with hands full with materials for class activities. I noticed the materials and stopped to ask if the class had been fun, but the answer that I received took me by surprise. With tears in the corners of her eyes, she mumbled that she could not even take out the materials she had worked hard on: “I couldn’t do anything. The low-track students didn’t want to do anything. They didn’t want to read, write, or even play a game”. Questioning her professional skill and identity, the teacher sighed and said that she really regretted becoming an English teacher.  I had been teaching tracked-English classrooms since 2007, and had experienced the same problems repeatedly. These conflicts led me to use my seniority and to choose high-track classes, and to assign low-track classes to non-regular instructors who were employed by the government as English Conversation Instructors (영어회화전문강사) for two purposes: to facilitate communicative competence and tracking. Despite teachers’ ambivalence towards the effects of tracking on English learning, it has become entrenched within the public school system, engendering a set of beliefs in its ability to act as a springboard for students to advance to the next level. As Bourdieu (1977) argues, it is collective misrecognition that leads social actors to the state of doxa, an unchallenged belief for “the naturalization of its own arbitrariness” (p. 164). The misrecognition around tracking seems to hamper teachers, including myself, from 9  problematizing the use of tracking and taking actions to challenge it. The reality is I have rarely seen low-track students advancing to the next level. Given the large number of students who are low-tracked for their entire middle and high school years and the reluctance of teachers, including myself, to teaching them, the effects of tracking on English learning in tandem with identity development should be brought to the fore via classroom-based ethnographic research.  In Korea, there is a popular and poignant expression, yeong-po-ja (영포자) which is a shortened form of “yeong-eo (영어, English) po-gi (포기, give-up) ja (자, person)” and refers to those who have withdrawn from English learning. The existence of the term, yeongpoja, and a range of commercialized resource books specially designed for them are evidence of the local significance of English in education and the job market. During high school, I was also a yeongpoja. I was born in a remote mountain village, and my parents, who had lived through Korea’s historical turbulence of Japanese colonialism and the Korean War, were very poor farmers. Because poverty prevented both of them from completing their elementary education, they always hoped that higher education would provide upward social mobility for their children. In my small village, I was an “okay” student throughout elementary and middle school, but I began to have problems after entering a high school located in a city.  With high hopes, my parents had me take an entrance exam for a city high school and fortunately, I got accepted and began to live alone at the age of fifteen. However, my rural experiences turned out to be often in conflict with what I encountered while attending the city school. To someone raised in the country-side, it was not easy to keep up with other city students who had already been studying for the high school curriculum since middle school; English was above all the most challenging subject. I still remember myself sitting in an English classroom, with feelings of anxiety, insecurity and frustration. The dreadful fear and anxiousness of being 10  singled out in English class led me to choose silence as a tool to protect myself from public humiliation. I know too well what it means to be yeongpoja in English classrooms. The label, regardless of being sanctioned by either others or self, has a tremendous impact on students’ construction of social identity, often leaving them with life-long emotional trauma. Needing to overcome this feeling of inferiority or sense of junuk (주눅) in Korean might be one of the driving forces which kept me pursuing higher academic credentials.  In this respect, the more yeongpoja I found in low-track classes, the more I blamed myself for my role in propagating the tracking policy. To initiate a critical discussion over the politics of teaching and learning English by tracks, I decided to embark on this critical ethnography. By exploring “hows” and “whats” through an ethnographic lens, I aim to illuminate the contingent, multidirectional and complex processes of language socialization.  1.3 Situating the Study within a Social Practice Paradigm  Defining a paradigm as “the basic belief system or worldview that guides the investigator”, Lincoln and Guba (1994, p. 195) suggest that researchers situate their study within a larger paradigm and make explicit the ontological, epistemological, and methodological positions they take into their studies (see also Lincoln & Guba, 2011).   The ontological and epistemological position I take in this study departs from scientific objectivity, normativity, and neutrality couched in a positivistic paradigm in which language is cast as a fixed entity and language learning as a linear and static process. The objectification of language as a value-free entity, as Reagan (2004) points out, leads not only to reifying language itself but also to reinforcing dominant ideologies and technician approaches to language teaching and research. He maintains that this occurs because all pedagogical practices are ultimately questions of epistemology—“the way we think about knowledge and what it means to know are 11  directly and necessarily linked to all aspects of how we teach” (p. 51, emphasis in original). The positivistic paradigm is theoretically and methodologically unviable with the hermeneutic nature of research (Denzin, 2003; Duff, 2008a; Kincheloe & McLaren, 2005; Lincoln & Guba, 2011), and works to “mystify the inherently ideological nature of research in the human sciences and to legitimate privilege based on class, race, and gender” (Lather, 1986a, p. 64).  From this standpoint, my ontological and epistemological position is primarily grounded in theories of cultural production (Aronowitz & Giroux, 1993; Dolby et al., 2004; Levinson et al., 1996; Willis, 1981) and language socialization (Duff, 2003; Duff & Talmy, 2011). Although these theories are derived from different academic disciplines, they share many underlying principles. Both frameworks conceive of the nature of social reality as multiple, contingent, and a site of struggle over meaning, value, ideology, identity and power, given that power is not simply repressive but also productively circulating in intricate ways (cf. Foucault, 1980a; Giddens, 1979; Pennycook, 2001). Accordingly, this study deems language learning as a social practice, and the cultural production of “the educated person” (Levinson et al., 1996) is a dynamic and complex process by which multiple discourses and power relations significantly mediate the meaning of “the educated person” throughout language socialization processes. This allows for conceptualizing the notions of subjectivity, identity, agency, resistance and ideology in terms of emergence, relativity, performativity and multiplicity within particular local contexts.   1.4 Conceptualizing a Key Term: Social Class  Many of the initial studies concerning the complex processes of cultural production came out of Birmingham’s Centre for Contemporary Cultural Studies (CCCS) in the 1970s. Particularly important to such work was a critical analysis of class-based inequalities focusing on how institutional forms of culture and power were (re)produced, accommodated or resisted 12  within situated social practices. Paul Willis’s (1977) seminal work, Learning to Labour marked a theoretical and methodological break from reproduction theories, as the notion of resistance as the primary orientation was located through ethnography. It was shown how working-class “lads” in a secondary school in an industrialized town resisted the middle-class values of the school and produced their own subculture and masculine identities. The “lads” ended up getting working-class jobs, but what is important is that they “reproduce[d] existing structures only through struggle, contestation and a partial penetration of those structures” (p. 175).  Since Willis’s work, other notable critical ethnographic studies in education have been carried out (Corrigan, 1979; Eckert, 1989; Griffin, 1985; Levinson & Holland, 1996; McLaren, 1986; McNeil, 1986, 2000, Weis, 1990, 2004). For example, Jean Anyon’s (1981, 2008) study of five elementary schools in contrasting class settings in America showed how knowledge was differently distributed and practiced across working-class, middle-class and executive elite schools, and how upper-class parents skillfully fortified their own privilege in pursuit of class distinction (cf. Atkinson, 2003; Brantlinger, 2003; Heath, 1983; Howard, 2008; Reay, 2010). In this regard, Bernstein (1996) argues that “social class is a major regulator of the distribution of students to privileging discourses and institutions”, and suggests taking into account “the constraints and grip of class-regulated realities” as a locus of symbolic control over democracy, culture and education (p. 11; see also Apple, 2004c; Bourdieu & Passeron, 1977).  Since the rise of Thatcherism and Reaganism in the 1980s, the logic of neoliberal globalization has been heightened, thereby relocating working-class manufacturing industries from “First World” to “Third World” nations (Collins, 2012; Dolby & Dimitriadis, 2004; Harvey, 2005). The advent of this new political economy reconstituted the division of labor and class structure and entailed the shift of modern society from “a society of producers” to “a society of 13  consumers”—one ruled by the aesthetic of consumption which is primarily concerned about individuals’ capacity as consumers and their choice (Bauman, 1998). Given this drastic shift in and the instability of the labor market, Willis (2004) states that the composition of social class has become far more complex and uncertain, and “the contradictions of individualism and meritocracy [have carried] over, actually in much deeper ways, from the days of Learning to Labor” (p. 162). This point is well underscored by Anyon’s (2005) analysis on the links between underfunded schools and the macroeconomic system. Against this backdrop of prevailing class inequality, both Willis and Anyon argue for bringing social class to the centre to critique the neoliberal global economic order and social stratification. Likewise, Rampton et al. (2008) also point out, “In the era of the new globalized economy, mass migration and population mobility, analysis without a sense of class has become both increasingly common and increasingly inadequate” (pp.76-77; see Apple, 2004a; Block, 2014; Collins, 2012; Weis & Dolby, 2012).  The recent popularity of poststructuralist approaches to research has obscured social class as an important construct for academic inquiry. Therefore, understanding social class requires “giving due recognition of the multiple ways in which people are formed” (Au & Apple, 2009, p. 92). As Weis (2010) notes:  While class must be understood and theorized primarily in relation to the economy, we must additionally recognize that class rests fundamentally in the ‘lived’ realm in that it organizes the social, cultural, and material world in exceptionally powerful ways.(p. 415) This view resonates well with Reay (2010) who foregrounds the notions of temporality, spatiality, and relationality to capture contemporary class relationships of schooling, because “[t]he lived experience of class varies across time and space, so class is experienced in different ways in different national contexts” (p. 402). With a focus on time and space, Reay argues that we can 14  illuminate relational aspects of educational achievement within a highly competitive and individualized neoliberal space in which the middle-class sense of intellectual superiority often results in pathologising working classes as unmotivated, thus embodying the class-based imagination of future career trajectories. That is, while working- class groups are more likely to envisage themselves within a familiar locality, the middle classes tend to have a more cosmopolitan aspiration (Block, 2014; Brantlinger, 2003; J. S.-Y. Park, 2013).  The middle class may simply represent a group that falls socioeconomically between the working class and upper class within the class spectrum. Yet, given the extent of variables such as consumer spending, education and others, no single definition would suffice as to what constitutes the middle class. In defining the middle class, one of the common measures that OECD studies use is a median income-based definition which specifies the middle class as 50% to 150% of national median equivalized household income (Castellani & Parent, 2011). Drawing on this definition, Statistics Korea, a government institute, implemented the 2014 Family Income Survey and defined the middle class in Korea as those households which make approximately 1,700 to 5,033 USD (50%~150%) monthly in accordance with the 2014 median income (3,360 USD) for a family of four. Among a total of Korean households, 65.6% fell into this middle class category, suggesting an increase in the middle class and a decrease in income inequality (S.Kwon, 2014).  However, the 2016 Korean Middle Class Report released by NH Investment & Securities projected conflicting results. The institute selected 1,128 middle-class people between their thirties and fifties who earn about 3,340 USD per month and have net assets of 178,524 to 267,785 USD, and conducted a survey on their self-perception as being members of the middle class. Interestingly, the survey showed that 79.1% of the respondents did not classify themselves 15  as a part of the middle class, but rather as lower class. This is indicative of a discrepancy between national statistics and people’s perceptions and lived experiences. According to the respondents, middle-class status requires the ownership of a mid-sized car and an apartment bigger than 102 m2, a monthly expense of more than 334 USD on their children’s private education, and so forth. In terms of values, they prioritized the stability of their families, and deemed themselves as conservatives for change (D. Choi, 2015).   As Harvey (2005) notes, “[w]hile neoliberalism may have been about the restoration of class power, it has not necessarily meant the restoration of economic power to the same people” (p. 31), given its close association with neoconservative elites through a reconfiguration of what constitutes an upper class (see also Apple, 2006; Giroux, 2008). In this sense, it is necessary to address the impact of the new political economic conditions on the reconfiguration of the middle class. South Korea is one of a few countries which has achieved a remarkable economic growth within a single generation, and this rapid progress has contributed to the dramatic expansion of the middle class. Since the Asian financial crisis in 1997, however, employment instability and income inequality have worsened, affecting people of all social strata, particularly the middle class substantially (Byun & Kim, 2010; H. Park, 2007). In a study on Korean early-study-abroad or jogiyuhak  (조기유학) adolescents in Toronto, H. Shin (2010) points out the following: Given the increased class disparity and the collapse of segments of the middle class during and after the financial crisis in Korea, the pace and extent to which jogi yuhak, which was initially the practice of well-off members of at least upper-middle class, has spread into different tiers in the middle class is noteworthy. (p. 9)  In response to increase in the number of middle-class jogiyuhak students, Shin maintains that “the old Korean middle class (now elites)” created transnational cosmopolitanism as a new form 16  of capital for distinction. This was subsequently pursued by “the new middle class” through jogiyuhak in search of amassing two key sources of symbolic capital: “authentic” English acquired in English-speaking countries; and educational credentials from prestigious Western universities (p. 11). Shin (2012) adds that “ jogiyuhak students and families used ‘consumption’ to negotiate their social positioning as modern, cosmopolitan citizens in Canada” (p. 186), where “citizenship has been conflated with consumption rather than production” (Dolby & Dimitriadis, 2004, p. 7).  Issues like these substantiate the reality that demarcating a middle class is not simple. In the neoliberal economic order,  the middle class is largely perceived as a consumer class whose members display characteristics, including a stable income and job, housing, good educational backgrounds, and vigorous investments in their children’s education as well as family cultural and leisure activities (Apple, 2004b; Block, 2014; Brantlinger, 2003; Reay, 2008; H. Shin, 2014). Accordingly, this study conceptualizes the middle class in a generic sense, referring to those who have resources and affordance and invest economic capital as well as emotional capital in their children’s education. Diane Reay’s (2000, 2004) notion of “emotional capital”, which is an extension of Bourdieu’s concept of capital to the realm of affective domains, represents the key role of mothers’ involvement in their children’s education. With a focus on the impact of social class on gendered notions of emotional capital in her research, Reay (2004) posits that emotional capital does not differ greatly by class: [W]orking-class women found it more difficult to supply their children with resources of emotional capital than their middle-class counterparts because they were frequently hampered by poverty, negative personal experiences of schooling, insufficient educational knowledge and lack of confidence. (p. 65; see S.-J. Park, 2007) 17  Taken together, social class is inextricably connected to who we are (becoming), not just about what we have or don’t have. This study conceives of social class not as a static categorical position but as a social construct emerging from the means of production, economic and cultural resources and taste, and social relations with others while intersecting with other identity inscriptions, such as race ethnicity, gender, language competence, able/disable bodies, sexuality and others (Block, 2007, 2014; Griffin, 2003; Rampton et al., 2008; Reay, 2010; Savage et al., 2013; Weis, 2010). Given that social categories do not act independently of one another, the notion of intersectionality highlights how the intersection of multiple identity categories which often work on simultaneous levels entails the stigmatization and marginalization of the disadvantaged (Crenshaw, 1991; Mccall, 2005). Understanding the role of social class in schooling, hence, is not only about what students have, but also about their lived experiences and subjectivities that shape their particular ways of knowing and doing.  To highlight the intersection of English competence, track placements and class divisions, I elaborate on the social practice patterns of participants, particularly focusing on the different forms of investment in English learning among students from different tracks and diverse backgrounds. Building on Bourdieu’s notion of distinction in relation to habitus or socially-mediated individual dispositions and forms of capital, this study factors in three major backgrounds of the participants to understand their social class: 1) academic background as related to students’ English skills and their educational aspirations; 2) sociocultural background as related to students’ transnational trajectories or physical mobility, parents’ “emotional capital” invested in education and social networking; and 3) socioeconomic background as related to students’ English learning trajectories or forms of investment in shadow education, learning done 18  outside of the public education system, and the level of institutional support2 received in terms of meal plans, supplies, supplementary programs, school fees, etc. The Korean government provides economic support for low-income families, such as the National Basic Livelihood Security recipients, single-parent families, and near-poor families, and those who do not meet the conditions of any of the categories could receive support on the local level.  However, the boundaries of each background are not likely to be clearly defined but will instead be intersected. Rather than categorizing students under certain class labels, I thickly describe participants’ academic, sociocultural and socioeconomic conditions, which is intended to help readers to surmise the students’ class positions on their own.  1.5 Research Questions With the above concerns in mind, I approached this study with the intention of exploring multiple ideologies and discourses surrounding English and tracking in school and how these discourses mediate language teaching and learning in tracked ninth-grade English classes. The following are the research questions which guided this study:   1. What ideologies inform the implementation of “tracking English” in the school?   2. What are students’ beliefs and discourses surrounding learning English by track?  3. What ideologies mediate teachers’ instructional practices by track?  4. How do students negotiate their language learning and identities within tracked classrooms?                                                   2 In Korea, there is a social program called Oneclick, an online platform through which parents can apply for government support at the beginning of each year. They are asked to submit many documents such as bank statements and property ownership papers to prove their economic hardship. Once an application is submitted and evaluated, district offices send schools a list of students who have been selected for institutional support in March or April of the same year.   19  5. What effects, if any, does tracking have on English learning and use of students from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds?  This study involves multiple sources and methods, including participant observation, field notes, audio-recording of classes, the collection of site documents, multimodal artifacts, and interviews. Data are analyzed through critical discourse analysis (Blommaert, 2005; Talmy, 2010a). The complementary benefits of critical ethnography and critical discourse analysis is cogently foregrounded by Talmy (2010b), “particularly in terms of analytic accountability (how defensible or warranted an analysis is) and demonstrability of research claims (how warrants for research claims are demonstrated)” (p. 128).  1.6 Structure of the Dissertation In Chapter 2, I present a brief genealogy of English education in Korea and discuss the country’s sociolinguistic context, with a focus on English, tracking and the neoliberalization of education. I then examine the relevant literature on tracking in general education and L2 learning in regard to identity, resistance, and cultural production.  In Chapter 3, I introduce the theoretical frameworks of cultural production and L2 socialization. While the cultural production framework offers a critical lens to reveal unequal relations of power within the system of tracking, L2 socialization provides an analytic lens to explore how socialization into such hierarchical relations influences the processes of L2 learning and teaching. By discussing the notions of ideology, identity, agency, and resistance as conceptualized within the two frameworks, I am able to show how these theories are appropriate for this study to highlight the contingent, contested, and multidirectional processes of socialization.  20  Chapter 4 demonstrates how critical ethnography, along with critical discourse analysis, aligns with this research. Specific research processes, from negotiating access to a research site to interpreting and representing cross-cultural qualitative data are discussed.  Chapters 5 to 8 include the analysis and primary findings of the study according to each research question. To answer the first research question, in Chapter 5, I explore the rationales for tracking and discuss multiple ideologies which mediate the implementation of English tracking at SunnyHill. To answer the second research question, in Chapter 6, I examine the multiple discourses and ideologies surrounding English and tracking and then discuss SunnyHill social actors’ beliefs about “tracking English” and narrative accounts of their lived experiences of learning English as tracked students. Focusing on how teachers and students differently navigate language teaching and learning according to track locations, I present answers in relation to research questions three to five through an analysis and discussion of the classroom interactional data in a low-track classroom in Chapter 7 and a high-track classroom in Chapter 8.  Chapter 9 summarizes the findings of this study, provides its implications and limitations, and suggests directions for future research.  21  Chapter 2: English, Tracking and Neoliberalization of Education in Korea  2.1 Introduction This chapter explores language ideologies surrounding English and ideologies that are evident in tracking policy and practice in South Korea. Given the local significance of English in education and the job market, such a macro-level sociolinguistic portrait is crucial to understanding micro-level local practices. As Pennycook (2013) notes, “it is not so much language as language ideology that is the object of language policy” (p. 1), and therefore, policy is not a free-standing text, but rather a discourse mediated by historical, political, and ideological interests. In this regard, a close analysis of the interplay between English and educational policies like tracking allows for a more contextualized understanding of how English is implicated in the neoliberal rhetoric of endless competition and perpetual self-management in education, functioning as a significant element within the larger framework of neoliberalism (Block et al., 2012; Kubota, 2016; H. Shin & Park, 2016).   In this chapter, I first explore the hegemonic status of English through a genealogical analysis (Foucault, 1984) of the local construction of English in light of neoliberal reforms in education, with a particular focus on tracking. By locating tracking against the backdrop of the role of English, it is possible to identify the hidden agendas that underlie tracking and to illuminate how the interplay between English and neoliberalism works to rationalize the policies and practices surrounding English as one of the imperatives of globalization. I then review relevant literature in K-12 classroom research.   2.2 The Sociolinguistic Context of South Korea and Language Ideologies In exploring the hegemony of English in Korea, Joseph Park (2009) analyzed 22  metadiscourses about English and investigated how the workings of language ideologies and circulating ideologies around globalization have served as a conduit for Koreans to follow the trend of “English fever” by relentlessly investing in the language. The investment is made with the hope that someday the participants would be free from the fear of English. Framing language ideologies as socially situated beliefs, Park (2009) categorized ideologies of English into three types: 1) Necessitation which constructs English as an essential skill for social success; 2) Externalization which dismisses English as an Other in conflict with linguistic nationalism; and 3) Self-deprecation which casts English as an “unspeakable tongue” despite substantial investment in it (p. 2). These ideologies work simultaneously and lead many Koreans to disclaim English with the feelings of anxiety about it, or what he calls the invocation of junuk (주눅), a deep-seated sense of inferiority in an encounter with a powerful superior (J. S.-Y. Park, 2015).  Aspects of subjectivity such as affect, feeling, disposition, attitude, emotion, and desire are not simply matters of an individual’s psychological state. They are socially situated and spatiotemporally constituted by and constitutive elements of subjectivity (Benesch, 2013; Duff, 2007b; Holland & Leander, 2014; Motha & Lin, 2014; Weedon, 1987). From this, taking of an affective stance, such as junuk in regards to English, is mediated by the discourses surrounding English in Korea. This necessitates a genealogical analysis on multiple scales and dimensions in shaping such subject positions in order to account for the constitution of the subject within a social, cultural, and historical realm (Blommaert, 2007; Lemke, 2000).  2.2.1 The Ideological Construction of English: A Genealogy of English Education  English language education was first introduced to Korea in 1883, when the Choseon Dynasty opened its first public foreign language school, Dong-moon-hak (동문학) to nurture elite interpreters for facilitating commercial transactions and diplomatic relations (Chang, 2009; Kim-23  Rivera, 2002; O. Kwon, 2000). This initiative was enacted due to a need for interpreters soon after the ratification of the nation’s first treaty with America in 1882. As there was no English interpreter in Korea, it was only through the assistance of a Chinese interpreter that the treaty could be ratified. Along with government institutions, missionary schools played a pivotal role in promoting English education, albeit in a different way, as they opened their doors to everyone regardless of class and gender; in this way, English was constructed as symbolic capital for upward social mobility in a hierarchically sensitive society (Bourdieu, 1986; Min, 2010).  However, the boom in English education was significantly interrupted when Korea was colonized by Japan at the beginning of the 20th century. To effectively indoctrinate Koreans as the subordinate subjects of Japan and to assimilate them into Japanese culture and language, the Japanese empire restricted Koreans from access not only to education beyond the elementary level, but also to other languages, including English and Korean (Kim-Rivera, 2002; Seth, 2002). Even if English was introduced on a limited level, it was taught only by Japanese teachers via the Japanese language (Chang, 2009). Having forced missionaries to return to their home countries,  the Japanese empire strengthened the policy of forced assimilation and prohibited Koreans from travelling or studying abroad. Nonetheless, under the heavy surveillance of the colonial period, some Koreans fueled their enthusiasm for English at alternative night schools which were confidentially established by Korean intellectuals (Kim-Rivera, 2002; Min, 2013).  Shortly after liberation, the significance of English in South Korea became more salient between 1945 and 1948, when the U.S. military forces established a transitional government in the southern half of the peninsula, and the Soviet Union exercised sovereign power on its northern half. During this process, many important government positions were only able to be occupied by those who maintained a close political and cultural alignment with America and its 24  language, English. It is not surprising that the U.S. government appointed Rhee, Syng-man (1948-1960) as the first Korean president, an individual who earned his doctoral degree in America and was fully cognizant of the political value of English. The term, Tong-yeok-jeong-bu (통역정부) or “translation government” which represents Rhee’s pro-American government succinctly encapsulates the central role of English and Korea’s close dependency on the United States (J. S. Park, 2009; Shim & J. S. Park, 2008). After the Korean War (1950-1953), as South Korea was put under the U.S. trusteeship, the U.S. government more actively participated in organizing the South Korean cabinet with American-friendly elites who demonstrated a high-level proficiency of English in many cases (J. S. Park, 2009; H. Shin, 2007).  Because of ongoing political confrontations and conflicts with North Korea, South Korea has kept its close alliance with the United States in security, trade, culture, and politics, all while placing an emphasis on English. In Korea, English was adopted as a regular subject in 1945 (Jung & Norton, 2002), and recognized as the first foreign language in the Second National Curriculum (1963-1974). It is likely due to such close ties with  the United States that Koreans tend to normalize American English. This genealogical analysis shows that the sense of junuk many Koreans feel in relation to English is not merely an individual experience, but rather one that is discursively constructed through the multiple dimensions of their lived experiences and subject positions.  In the next section, I discuss how English is implicated in neoliberal practice and suggest tracking as one way in which an unequal access to English manifests itself in Korea 2.3 Locating English within Neoliberal Reforms of Education: Focusing on Tracking After the end of Japanese colonial rule and the Korean War, the structure of stratification started to come to an end, and its collapse steered Koreans to view education as the most 25  powerful means for upward social mobility and economic prosperity. This resulted in a deepening “education fever” or “a national obsession with the attainment of education” (Seth, 2002, p. 6). Owing to the lack of school facilities in the 1960s and 1970s, middle and high schools selected their students through competitive high-stakes entrance exams. This social phenomenon caused many adolescents to suffer through so-called “examination hell,” and gave rise to the shadow education business in Korea (Lee et al., 2010). Shadow education refers to fee-based tutoring outside the public school system, and exists in various forms, including individual tutoring, cram schools, and English language institutes (Baker et al., 2001). Although middle school entrance exams were abolished in Korea in 1971 (KMOE, 1988), the intensity of educational competition continued, allowing the shadow education market to thrive.   In response, the government enacted the policy of equalization (pyeonjunhwa, 평준화) in 1974 for the purpose of creating equality among students from diverse socioeconomic backgrounds, foreclosing overheated competition, and reducing the financial burden of shadow education (Chun, 2003; Seong, 2004). The policy included measures such as reducing the autonomy of colleges’ admissions processes, eliminating high school entrance exams, randomizing high school assignments, and prohibiting tracking and curriculum differentiation (Chun, 2003; C. J. Lee et al., 2010; H. Park, 2007; Seong, 2004). Despite its contribution to alleviating competition and the hierarchical structure of secondary education, the equalization policy was critiqued for hindering the enhancement of high-performing students’ progress in an era of neoliberal globalization. This is in line with Apple (2006); “neoliberalism does not usually stand alone. It is almost always accompanied by parts of a neoconservative agenda, one that is often aimed at restoring ‘lost’ traditions and authority” (p. 24).  26  2.3.1 English, Tracking and the Neoliberalization of Education  The equalization policy was denounced for stifling students’ excellence, mostly by middle-class parents, conservative media, politicians, and university authorities during the regime of Kim, Yeong-sam (1993-1997), a leader who openly embraced the logic of a neoliberal market economy (Gim, 1997, 2004; Y.-M. Kwon, 2005). The discourse around placing equity over excellence in public education galvanized Koreans and brought the topic of globalization to center stage. Under the pretext of greater competitiveness in the global market, President Kim officially proclaimed the drive for globalization (segyehwa,세계화) in 1995 (S. Kim, 2000), and joined the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) the following year. Not only did the segyehwa drive mark a watershed in boosting neoliberal reforms of education in Korea, but it also added momentum to the rise of an unprecedented obsession with English,  spawning terms like “English fever,” “English fetishism,” and “English frenzy” in academic circles (J.-K. Park, 2009; J. S.-Y. Park, 2009).  Marching to the beat of the segyehwa drum, the Presidential Committee for Education Reform proposed the 5.31 Education Reform Plans (5.31 gyoyuk gaeheokan, 교육개혁안) in 1995, mainly advocating two projects: one which would reinforce English education specifically focusing on communicative competence; another which would reinstate the tracking policy (Seong, 2007; J. S. Shin, 2004). The government’s emphasis on English generated a shift in the curriculum from the Grammar-translation method to Communicative Language Teaching (CLT), a move that was further rationalized through policies, including hiring native speakers of English (Jeon, 2009), teaching English in English-only (TEE) (H. Shin, 2007), and expanding English as a mandatory subject from the third grade (S. K. Jung & Norton, 2002).  27  With regards to reinstating tracking, the Committee argued that tracking could contribute to alleviating the overheated shadow education market and restoring the reliability of the public education system, by fulfilling the desires of middle and upper-middle class parents who were main consumers of the private education market (Chun, 2003; Y.-M. Kwon, 2005; Seong, 2007). To legitimize the restoration of tracking, the Committee (1995b) replaced tracking with the term, “differentiated curriculum,” and proposed its implementation only in two subjects, English and mathematics (pp.58-59). However, this policy was heavily criticized by teachers and intellectuals for ranking students in accordance with their social class, and for consequently serving to widen the achievement gap among students and between schools, as track locations were correlated with socioeconomic status (Sung, 2008; Yang, 2006). Due to the contention over the issues of equity and excellence, tracking was not immediately put into practice during the Kim, Yeong-sam regime, but it became the central pillar of the Seventh National Curriculum (1998-present) which was developed at the end of Kim’s presidency and took effect for all grades in 2004. This was followed by two rounds of revision in 2007 and 2009 respectively. Through this process, tracking has permeated into the Korean educational system, gradually dismantling the equalization policy.  While neoliberal initiatives were prevalent in education, Korea was confronted with the Asian financial crisis in 1997, which caused Kim’s ruling party to lose the presidential election to more progressive oppositional party leaders, Kim, Dae-jung (1998-2002) and subsequently Roh, Moo-hyun (2003-2007). Ironically, the Korean economic depression acted as a catalyst for deepening English fetishism (Piller & Cho, 2013), as English was believed to be a means for revitalizing the nation’s economy. This linguistic instrumentalism ignited a nationwide debate in 1998 over adopting English as an official language (O. K. Yoo, 2005). In addition, Korean 28  chaebeol (재벌) groups, i.e., large corporations, placed an increasing emphasis on English in their employment criteria as they began to expand their businesses globally.  During the ten years of progressive administrations, the ideal of neoliberal globalization was still ubiquitous in education. In 2001, the Kim administration even modified the name of the “Ministry of Education” to “Ministry of Education & Human Resources Development” to reflect the intent of producing Koreans as human capital with knowledge and competencies to further economic growth: “In the 21st century, the future of Korea hinges upon the competitiveness of human resources” (KMOE, 2001, p. 1). This market-oriented direction was substantiated through education policies, including the Plans for Education Excellence (수월성교육종합대책) in 2004, Plans for Vitalizing the Tracking Policy (수준별수업활성화방안) in 2005 and the Five Year Plan for English Education Vitalization (영어교육활성화 5 개년종합대책) in 2006, all of which were designed to promote the tracking policy and English education, with an emphasis on “excellence” (Byun & Kim, 2010; Hwang, 2014; Jeon, 2009).  Although the neoliberalization of education has been happening since the 1990s, it was during Lee, Myung-bak’s regime (2008-2012) that it became much more intensified. During Lee’s presidency, the government embarked more aggressively on the marketization and privatization of education by implementing the School Liberation Plan (학교자율화계획) and 300 Project for the Diversification of High Schools (고교다양화300프로젝트), which are associated with the following polices: 1) deregulating the admission procedure of colleges and elite high schools; 2) permitting the opening of a greater number of elite high schools and international schools; 3) strengthening English immersion instruction (Teaching English in English only or TEE) and expanding “English villages” which simulate English-speaking contexts; 4) reinstating nationwide standardized exam (iljegosa, 일제고사) in 2008, ten years after its abolition; 5) giving 29  merit-based incentive pay to teachers and schools; and 6) reinforcing tracking at the national level (Choi & Andon, 2013; Jeon, 2012a, 2012b; J. S.-Y. Park, 2013).  Notably, schools were given autonomy in deciding whether to enforce tracking or not, but the issue of autonomy in tracking requires close scrutiny of how tracking sits in relation to other policies. Coupled with tracking, the Lee government reinstated the nationwide standardized test or iljegosa in 2008, ten years after its abolition. Below is the policy discourse in regards to iljegosa, or what the government referred to as the National Assessment of Educational Achievement (NAEA), which I retrieved from the Korean Ministry of Education.   Figure 2.1 Discourse about NAEA Retrieved September 16, 2016 from http://english.moe.go.kr/web/1707/site/contents/en/en_0275.jsp  On the grounds of building “a comprehensive student service mechanism” and supporting “schools with a significant number of underachieving students,” the government justified the reenactment of iljegosa as well as the release of the test results. Unsurprisingly, however, it was used as a means for ranking students, teachers, schools, districts, and provinces and also as a way of providing performance-based incentive pay. In what followed, some school districts falsified students’ records, while others pushed school principals to enhance test scores. This pressure resulted in the adoption of measures such as implementing extracurricular make-up classes 30  before and after school, teaching to the test using workbooks, and reinforcing the tracking of students. In this sense, the government’s claim of a decrease in the number of underachieving students—7.2% (2008) to 3.7 (2010)—merely reflects the washback effect rather than the real growth of academic competence. As McNeil (2005) notes in her study of the accountability of standardized testing in America, the failure to acknowledge the negative impact of national testing seems like “a way of faking educational equity” (p. 72) by making it less transparent as to whether schools serve their students well (see also Fine, 2005; McNeil et al., 2008). Given that, testing such as iljegosa is a way for neoliberalism and neo-conservatism to maintain tight control over school curriculum and shift the blame for school failure onto students, teachers, and schools, intensifying competition in education (Apple, 2006; Nolan & Anyon, 2004).  Furthermore, what is significant is the role that English plays in the neoliberalisation of education (Jeon, 2012a). The establishment of the English Education Task Force Team (영어교육강화팀) within the Ministry of Education during the Lee regime clearly testifies to the government’s emphasis on English. Tracking seems to have been considered an effective policy to facilitate English learning and teaching. While offering pro-tracking conferences for principals and teachers, and disseminating videos, guide books and PowerPoint resources to schools (KMOE, 2008a, 2008b, 2008c), the government officially encouraged schools to carry out a “2+1” tracking system which involves combining two homeroom classes and then sorting them into three ability tracks. For reference, Korean students study with their homeroom classmates in their homerooms for a whole day in contrast to many North American schools where students change their classes each period.  To supplement the lack of teachers and classrooms, the government not only hired non-regular teachers under the name English Conversation Instructors (영어회화전문강사) and 31  expanded the number of native-English-speaking teachers, but also established greater numbers of English-only zones within schools (KMOE, 2009a). The English-only zones, which can be found in almost every elementary and middle school, are spaces equipped with English books, cutting-edge facilities and in some cases, simulated environments such as a post office or an airport. Moreover, the government initiated the Departmentalized Classroom System (교과교실제) in which students change their classes each period (KMOE, 2009b); this system was primarily applied to English. This policy has been continued by the incumbent president, Park, Geun-hye (2013-2017).  As Table 2.1 shows, tracking practices at the middle and high school rose from 32.5% in 2004, to 66.3% in 2007 and 77.2% in 2009. As tracking became gradually entrenched into the Korean education system, the government devolved tracking to local regions and schools in 2010  (Jin & Song, 2009). Since then, no statistics have been released, but research shows a steady rise in tracking up to the present (Hwang, 2014).   Table 2.1 Yearly Ratio of Tracking Practices in Middle & High Schools Nationwide Year 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 Ratio (%) 4.5-14.4 32.5 50.8 63.7 66.3 76.7 77.2  (Jin & Song, 2009)  In the following section, I turn to reviewing tracking literature in general education and L2 research in K-12 classrooms focusing on identity, resistance, and cultural production.  2.4 Tracking as a Worldwide Phenomenon: A Literature Review  Sociologists of education have focused heavily on what impact institutional organizations have in shaping students’ academic trajectories; tracking has thus attracted their attention over the decades. The practice, known as tracking or ability grouping in America and streaming or 32  setting in England refers to sorting students into academic programs, classes, and groups of high, average, and low ability in order for teachers to efficiently tailor instruction to the students’ needs, and it has been in practice for more than a century (Anderson & Oakes, 2014; Ireson & Hallam, 2001). Since the 1920s, many schools around the world, particularly in America and England, have tracked their students into separate programs such as vocational or college-preparatory ones designed for those who are expected to follow different career paths after high school graduation (Clandfield et al., 2014; Gamoran, 1992; Ireson & Hallam, 2001; Oakes, 1985). Given the possible differences in students’ intellectual abilities, motivations and aspirations, many proponents of tracking have regarded it as a logical, scientific, and democratic policy to accomplish two important purposes of public schooling: “(1) providing students with the education that best suits their abilities, and (2) providing the nation with the array of workers it needs” (Oakes, 1995, p. 682).  The meritocratic rhetoric of tracking has been vehemently debated by many educators and researchers over its legitimacy and concomitant issues of inequality (Apple, 2004c; Caughlan & Kelly, 2004; Ireson & Hallam, 2001; Lucas, 1999; Oakes, Gamoran, & Page, 1992; Shor, 1992). Many researchers have substantiated the overrepresentation of low-income students in lower tracks (Caughlan & Kelly, 2004; Kulik & Kulik, 1982; Kulik, 1992; Oakes, 1985, 1995; Watanabe, 2008), and the involvement of middle-class parents in negotiating their children’s track placements (Brantlinger, 2003; Harklau, 1994b; S. Kelly, 2004b). While socioeconomic status (SES) has direct effects on track placements, race, gender, and language competence indirectly influence track assignments. Some studies have brought to light “institutional racism” (Kubota & Lin, 2009) by uncovering that minority students are less likely to be high-tracked, when their test scores and SES backgrounds are identical to those of their White peers (Anderson 33  & Oakes, 2014; Lucas, 1999). In terms of teacher assignment, researchers have found that lower tracks are often instructed by less experienced and less well qualified teachers than higher tracks  (S. Kelly, 2004a; Oakes & Guiton, 1995; E. Yoo, 2013).  Disparities across tracks have been widely documented in the literature, with higher-track classes concentrating more on open-ended discussion, critical reasoning, and in-depth curriculum, while lower-track classes dealing with close-ended questions, basic skills, and behavior issues (Anderson & Oakes, 2014; Carbonaro, 2005; Caughlan & Kelly, 2004; Oakes et al., 1992). This phenomenon has been demonstrated by research that shows that students’ low-track placements in earlier grades rarely change, and low-track students achieve lower than their peers with the similar test scores who are placed in higher-track classes (Baek, 2011; Boaler, 2006; Watanabe, 2008). Moreover, some studies illuminate the counterproductive effect of tracking on high-track students. For instance, Korean studies have demonstrated that tracking can do harm to the self-efficacy of high-track students, as they are too concerned about their track assignments in comparison with their peers (Hwang, 2014; Y. Kim, 2012; Ryoo, 2008).  In the next section, I review qualitative research on tracking in general education, and L2 learning in tandem with identity, resistance, and cultural production.  2.4.1 Tracking Research in Education: Identity, Resistance and Cultural Production    One of the most comprehensive studies on tracking is Jeannie Oakes’s (1985) seminal work, Keeping Track. In this mixed methods study, Oakes examined English and mathematics tracks and questionnaires completed by teachers, students, and administrators in twenty-five secondary schools in America. By discussing substantial differences in curriculum content, instructional activities, classroom climate, and teachers’ expectations across tracks, Oakes 34  argued that the stigmatized position of low-track students in comparison with their high-track counterparts imposed more constraints on their learning and subjectivity. Oakes claimed that:  Negative relationships and low levels of student involvement appear not only to restrict their chances of learning but to socialize students in such a way that they are prepared to stay at the bottom levels of institutions, not only as teenagers in schools but in adult life as well. (p. 134, emphasis added) Such a negative self-image led low-track students to hold themselves responsible for their positions within the system and to reinforce the legitimacy of the hierarchy over years of schooling. Oakes’s findings resonated through Page’s (1991) ethnography of Lower-Track Classrooms. Focusing on curriculum differentiation, Page compared regular and lower track classrooms within and across two high schools in America, finding that teachers’ overt labeling of low tracks as “‘holding tanks’ or ‘dumping grounds’  for students with behavioral problems” (p. 48). Given teachers’ low expectations, fragmented instruction, individualized classwork, and disciplinary practices in lower tracks, Page argued that “teachers structure lower-track lessons for control” (p. 52).  Building on Oakes’s (1985) and Page’s (1991) empirical studies, a growing number of researchers have undertaken ethnographic work on tracking with a focus on identity, resistance, and cultural production in such subject areas as science (Gilbert & Yerrick, 2001), mathematics (Hand, 2010; Zevenbergen, 2005), language arts (Watanabe, 2008; Zeuli, 2011), and English as an additional language (Harklau, 1994b; Lin, 1999). In science, Gilbert and Yerrick  (2001) examined eight low-track students in a rural high school science classroom in America. Their discourse analysis of interactions showed student apathy and disengagement, teacher frustration, and disparities in their discourses and beliefs, highlighting the habitual and collaborative 35  occasioning of student resistance to memorization, repetition and the teacher’s lecturing. They then concluded that “[i]t is through resistance and negotiation that lower track students choose to engage outsiders on their own terms” (p. 590).  In Australia, Zevenbergen (2005) conducted an interview-based study on students in secondary schools and analyzed their learning experiences within streamed settings. Drawing on Bourdieu’s habitus, Zevenbergen argued that the streamed practice of school mathematics created conditions that influenced the construction of a very different mathematical habitus, and such differentiation led students in upper streams to envision their futures in mathematics more positively than students in lower streams who resisted school mathematics. Zevenbergen’s finding was further substantiated by Hand’s (2010) one-year-long ethnography in an eighth grade low-track algebra classroom in America. The study focused on the emergence of students’ “oppositional events” in class, showing that students’ acts of resistance grew more deliberately and collaboratively over time, from talking out of turn and joking around to ignoring the teacher’s directives, talking back to him, and even leaving the room in the middle of a lecture. Through a discourse analysis of classroom interactions, Hand further showed how classroom opposition was jointly constructed by the teacher and students and reinforced mainly by three factors: diminished access to meaningful engagement; a polarized participation structure; and marked low-track identity positions. Given opposition as a sociocultural phenomenon, Hand concluded, “the teacher’s desire to ensure his students’ success by maintaining strict control over their behavior meant that he began to resist them” (p. 126, emphasis in original).  The co-construction of learner identity was also highlighted in Watanabe’s (2008) ethnography on Grade 7 classes in the context of high-stakes state accountability reform as a response to No Child Left Behind (NCLB) in America. Based on one-year-long classroom 36  observation in two language arts classes, Watanabe found less explicit test preparation, more challenging reading, writing and discussion, and more constructive feedback for “academically-gifted” track students than their peers in “regular tracks”. Watanabe argued that “If tracking persists, high-stakes accountability programs are unlikely to lead to the desired closure of the achievement gap” (p. 522), suggesting the need for a two-tiered response: 1) abolishing tracking; and 2) supporting teachers through professional development programs. Similarly, Zeuli (2011) examined two low-tracked ninth grade English classes in America, and found wide discrepancies between students’ beliefs about literacy and teachers’ classroom practices. Although the students frequently engaged in literacy practices outside of school, they did not invest in class as they saw little connection between their needs and abilities and the English curriculum. Zeuli’s analysis showed that teachers’ discourses often positioned the low-track students as having deficits.  In L2 learning, ESL students’ limited linguistic proficiency was often conflated with an inability to learn content knowledge in mainstream classes. Harklau’s (1994b, 1994c) three-year ethnography highlighted the pervasiveness of “a perceived remedial stigma” (1994a, p. 241) associated with high school ESL programs in the America. At the inception of an ESL program, the author found that ESL students were often tracked in the lowest status rungs of the system, and the lack of access to advanced instruction and enriched curriculum had serious consequences for learners’ ability to “jump” tracks even if their language skills developed. Nevertheless, Harklau also observed that some students succeeded in the negotiation of their track placements skillfully. Likewise, much ESL research has addressed how students negotiate and resist multiple discourses surrounding ESL and their marked identity positions by not investing in ESL (McKay & Wong, 1996; Talmy, 2008), by becoming Black in a social imaginary where they were already produced as Black (Ibrahim, 1999), by deploying silence as a resource in a mainstream class 37  (Duff, 2004), by playfully appropriating linguistic surveillance (Miller & Zuengler, 2011) and by demonstrating “getting out of ESL” as socialization into ESL (Deschambault, 2016).  Along with student agency, teacher agency was underscored in Lin’s (1999) critical ethnography on tracking within and between schools, or “forms and bands” in Hong Kong. The analysis of data, gleaned across seven forms of English classes in high schools located in diverse socioeconomic districts, showed how English, unequally distributed across the class spectrum, worked as a gate-keeping mechanism for social stratification, and how social reproduction was counteracted by classroom practices in which teachers appropriated or resisted educational policies, for example, an English-only policy, to meet students’ needs. With an emphasis on teachers’ agency to alter “doing-English-lessons in the reproduction to in the transformation of the students’ social worlds” (p. 393), Lin stated:  [W]hat matters is not whether a teacher uses the L1 or the L2 but rather how a teacher uses either language to connect with students and help them transform their attitudes, dispositions, skills, and self-image—their habitus or social world. (p. 410)  Just as Lin’s study has done, some tracking research also concentrated on teachers’ agency and discussed successful instances of low-track classroom practices. A good example is Dillon’s (1989) ethnography, Showing Them That I Want Them to Learn and That I Care About Who They Are. The interactions between 17 black students and their white male teacher, Mr. Appleby, in a secondary low-track English reading classroom in America were examined. The analysis showed the teacher’s commitment to building good relationships with students and establishing an open, safe learning environment conducive to their affective learning needs. These actions included visiting the student homes, engaging in small talk with them, implementing lessons based on discussions, tasks, and materials relevant to students’ needs and 38  interests, maintaining classroom order without forcing control on students, treating them with respect and care, etc. Over this year-long field project, Dillon found that the students appreciated Mr. Appleby’s inclusive and culturally responsive classroom practices.   Dillon’s findings are similar to those found in Gamoran’s (1993) study which examined instances of high-quality instruction in the eighth- and ninth-grade  low-track English classes of two schools in America. Based on the findings, Gamoran characterized the successful instances in three ways: 1) teachers’ high expectations; 2) well-planned lessons and materials which foster extensive oral discourse; and 3) assigning highly experienced teachers to low tracks. Likewise, in interview-based research on low-track students, P. Lee (1999) found that low-track students explained that their most influential teachers were those who included a challenging curriculum and interactive learning and had high expectations. “The ethics of care” (Noddings, 1984) was illuminated in Yerrick et al. (2011) who analyzed low-track student narratives of what constitutes effective teaching. Their analysis showed that the students closely associated affective teacher attributes such as care and respect with effective planning and implementation.  The successful instances of low-track classrooms foreground that effective teaching involves both affective teacher attributes such as care, respect, and high expectations and pedagogical practices which reflect students’ needs and knowledge. This overall discussion implies that all instruction in low-track classrooms is not necessarily unconducive to students’ learning. Nonetheless, we should be cautious not to hold individual teachers wholly accountable for students’ performance. Given that teaching is a social practice mediated by multiple discourses, placing blame on teachers might result in scratching only the surface manifestation of deeper contradictions within tracking, and overlook its complicating effects on education.  The enduring effects of tracking have been found in detracking research. For example, 39  Yonezawa et al. (2002) conducted a three-year case study of ten secondary schools in America, where students were given autonomy to select their own track placements. Their analysis showed the resistance of low- and middle-track students, most of whom were African American and Latino, to entering high-track classes. Their long-term low-track placement and the hidden institutional barriers within schools had an effect in shaping their identities and ideologies, thereby leading them to choose “‘places of respect’—classrooms where they were not racially isolated and their cultural backgrounds were valued” (p. 40). Referring to those places as “safe spaces,” Yonezawa et al. advocated low-track classes as not necessarily oppressive places; yet they also critiqued the practice of allowing students to select their own tracks as it reproduces a hierarchy in the school. Loveless’s (1999) quantitative study on teachers’ perceptions pointed to teachers’ substantial resistance to detracking. Among them, Loveless maintained that mathematics and language teachers were the most resistant of their beliefs about the sequential nature of knowledge in their fields. On this matter, Oakes (1992) addressed three challenges to “detracking”: 1) technical challenges due to teachers’ reluctance to teach mixed-level students; 2) normative challenges due to the deep-seated norms of schooling; and 3) political challenges due to resistance from some parents of high-achieving students, educators, and policy makers.  Even though policymakers, researchers and educators have been cognizant of and concerned about the inherent dangers of tracking, the practice of tracking, with periods of ebb and flow, has been highly resistant to change and nearly entrenched in many forms within and across nations: Canada (Clandfield et al., 2014); Japan (Ono, 2001); Hong Kong (Cheung & Rudowicz, 2003; Lin, 1999); South Korea (Hwang, 2014); Israel (Ayalon & Gamoran, 2000); the UK (Ireson & Hallam, 2005); the United States (Oakes, 1985, Gamoran, 2010); and New 40  Zealand (Hornby & Witte, 2014).  2.5 Conclusion In this chapter, I have explored the multiple ideologies surrounding English and brought them to the fore to critique neoliberalism’s role in shaping the hegemony of English in Korea and reinforcing the neoliberalization of education, with a specifically focus on the tracking policy. This literature review of tracking in classroom research has highlighted the ideological underpinnings of tracking as well as a dialectical relation between the system and agency in light of student resistance and teacher accommodation. Moreover, the successful instances of low-track classroom practices have shown that all instruction in low tracks is not necessarily of low quality, but it is crucial to take into account that a majority of research on tracking has reached a similar conclusion: tracking has widened the achievement gaps between high-track students and low-track students substantially. Now I turn to outline the theories of cultural production and L2 socialization on which this study draws.  41  Chapter 3: Theoretical Frameworks 3.1 Introduction This study draws upon two main theoretical frameworks that support situated and context-relevant language learning and teaching. One is cultural production approaches to education (Dolby et al., 2004; Levinson & Holland, 1996), and the other is language socialization approaches to L2 learning (Duff, 2003; Duff & Talmy, 2011). Through a general overview of reproduction theories, I stress that the cultural production framework makes better sense than the reproduction one as it allows for capturing schools as sites of ongoing struggle and conflict, especially in the current context of postindustrialism, neoliberal globalization, and mass migration (Blommaert, 2010; Collins, 2012; Nolan & Anyon, 2004; Rizvi & Lingard, 2010). The orientation of cultural production to a dialectic of control and the creative capacity of agency contributes not only to broadening the purview of critical educational studies, but also to making it possible to imagine radical pedagogies for social transformation (Aronowitz & Giroux, 1993; Canagarajah, 1999; Dolby et al., 2004; Giroux, 1983a, 1983b; Levinson et al., 1996; O’Connor, 2003; Talmy, 2005; Weis, 2010; Willis, 1983).   Along with the cultural production framework in education, this study also draws on language socialization (LS) approaches to L2 learning. As Duff and Talmy (2011) note, “L2 socialization shares many underlying principles with other socially oriented theories, models, or accounts of SLA [second language acquisition]” (p. 96). LS illuminates interactionally-mediated processes through which members of a group are socializing and socialized into particular views, values, ideologies and identities (Bayley & Schecter, 2003; Duff, 2003, 2007b, 2008b; Duff & Talmy, 2011; Watson-Gegeo, 2004). Therefore, its linguistic and ethnographic orientation provides methodological and analytical tools for understanding how language is involved in the 42  construction of meaning and the production of “educated”, “uneducated” or even “uneducable” persons (Duff, 2008b; O’Connor, 2003; Talmy, 2005). A close analysis of situated language use, while particularly focusing on indexical ties between ideology and stance-taking in constructing identity, can provide insights into the dynamics of cultural productions throughout the process of socialization. As such, the nexus of LS and cultural production theories might be mutually supportive (Kulick & Schieffelin, 2004; Talmy, 2005). While the cultural production framework offers a critical lens to approach unequal relations of power in the process of socialization, LS provides an analytic lens to bring language to the centre and illuminate the process of cultural productions. Finally, I clarify the conceptions of ideology, identity and agency employed in this study.  3.2 Cultural Production Approaches to Education The interplay between power, politics, and culture has been the site of intellectual debate in critical and cultural studies. Influenced by Willis’s (1977) work, the concept of cultural production has been developing in critical educational studies. Within this framework, culture is seen not as a static body of knowledge, but as a dynamic process which “repeatedly mutates and is subject to ongoing changes and interpretations” (Giroux, 2004, p. 60). In this respect, Apple (2004a) extends his early theoretical work in Ideology and Curriculum (1979) and argues that schools need to be seen in a more complex manner because culture provides “significant resources in hegemonic and counter-hegemonic struggles” (p. 53). Accordingly, theories of cultural production build upon, but do not limit themselves to reproduction theories. By outlining the reproduction theories, I provide a theoretical basis for the cultural production framework.  43  3.2.1 Theories of Social and Cultural Reproduction  Grounded in a Marxist conception of economy as the determinant of social relations, the reproduction theories offer critical insights regarding the sociopolitical dimensions of schooling and class-based school failure. In early theories of social reproduction (Althusser, 1971; Bowles & Gintis, 1977, 2002), schools are depicted as directly engaging in replicating the social division of labor. By adding ideology to the economic realm, Althusser (1971) deemed state-sanctioned education as central in perpetuating hegemonic ideologies and (re)producing the status quo. More specifically, Bowles and Gintis (1977) undertook a form of class analysis and claimed that such an economic-reproduction function is accomplished by what they called the “correspondence principle”—structuring students to serve the needs of capitalist production. In Schooling in Capitalist America, the authors focused on the structure of schooling and its implication for socialization and demonstrated the contribution of schooling to later economic success by statistic econometric investigations. In their subsequent research, “Schooling in Capitalist America Revisited” (2002), they reaffirmed that “the extent of intergenerational economic status transmission is considerable” (p. 3), as parental class status was passed on to children, in part, by means of unequal educational opportunities and affordances.  While the economic-reproduction model focused on the structure of schooling in light of the divisions of labor, Pierre Bourdieu (1979a, 1990) shifted his attention to the function of school culture and hidden curriculum. Bourdieu argued that students were socialized with and within the school system through testing, their relationships, tracking, and linguistic practices, which inscribed them to various social positions. Drawing on the conceptions of habitus, capital, and field, Bourdieu provided in-depth insights into how the hegemonic curriculum in schools served to sustain and reproduce existing power relations in the larger society, for example, 44  through such symbolic practices as the selection and distribution of certain bodies of knowledge, which only validated the interests of the dominant.   The practice of distinction is deeply implicated in aesthetic taste, which rests in the lived realm. That is to say, that because taste is socially constructed and inculcated in relation to individuals’ habitus and forms of capital in fields, it features prominently in the reproduction of social class. Habitus, as described by Bourdieu (1990), is a set of “systems of durable, transposable dispositions” (p. 53) shaped by socialization through which individuals develop social attitudes and beliefs relevant to their historical, cultural, and social backgrounds, and their capital. Capital refers to resources of strength, power, and profit for the production of distinction. It includes four different, but intersecting forms; cultural, economic, social, and symbolic capital (Bourdieu, 1986). Cultural capital is the key concept to Bourdieu’s analysis on cultural reproduction, because children from different social classes bring different cultural capital to schools, and the culture transmitted by schooling tacitly confirms the dominant culture as legitimate, while disenfranchising the cultures of others in the field of education. Fields, in this sense, are fluid and dynamic spaces, sometimes interchangeable with “markets,” in which different forces with different forms of capital compete for power and greater indexical values.  In the field of education, a central logic of practice is the construction of common sense based on the ethics of objectivity, fairness, and neutrality. Those who possess strong symbolic capital take an advantageous status in embedding their hegemonic ideologies in the curriculum at the expense of the values and beliefs of other groups. Through the process of objectification, the powerful naturalize their ideologies as norms and internalize institutionally organized misrecognition into social actors. Bourdieu (1977a) deemed such “misrecognition” as a form of forgetting, and being produced and secured by “doxa,” which is an implicit belief in “the 45  naturalization of its own arbitrariness” (p. 164) or “universe of the undiscussed” (p. 168). Bourdieu (1992) explains the notion of doxa as follows:  The social world doesn’t work in terms of consciousness; it works in terms of practices, mechanisms and so forth. By using doxa, we accept many things without knowing them, and that is what is called3 ideology. (p. 113)  The doxic attitude means “bodily submission, unconscious submission, which may indicate a lot of internalized tension, a lot of bodily suffering” (p. 121). Such a powerful doxa acts as “a power to exert symbolic violence which manifests itself in the form of a right to impose legitimately, reinforces the arbitrary power which establishes it and which it conceals” (Bourdieu & Passeron, 1977, p. 13). It is thus the key to the normalization of policies, curriculum, and practices.  As such, Bourdieu provided a theoretical model for unraveling the relations of schooling and social control through the politicization of culture and school knowledge. In doing so, he highlighted the relative autonomy of schools and their mediating functions as compared with the framework of social reproduction. Moreover, Bourdieu’s notions of improvisation (e.g., Holland et al, 1998), and “‘heterodoxy,’ which is an oppositional kind of language” (Bourdieu & Eagleton, 1992, p. 114) opened the possibility for contestation and resistance. Nevertheless