Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Education




Dr. Julie Byrd Clark


In the contemporary globalized world, with diverse situations of language contact emerging, bilingualism is taking on dynamic new forms, yielding a new kind of bilinguals: balanced. Adopting a stance of resistance to the monolingual bias and with a view to refining the frameworks applied to the study of bilinguals, this research examines how balanced bilinguals process and express their emotions in each of their languages. This is a qualitative study that incorporates narrative inquiry and uses the narratives and autobiographical memories of five balanced bilinguals, of different language pairs and age/gender groups to better understand how these balanced bilinguals perceive their emotional processing and expression through their language socialization experiences. The findings suggest that identity is a crucial factor in determining balanced bilinguals’ emotional expression which varied from being ideal in the first language, in the second language, and in both. The implications call for independent, bilingualspecific models when studying the basic relations of the bilingual self and more emotionality in L2 curricula.