Despite the growing appeal of transnational perspectives in sociolinguistics, the bordered orderliness of nationalism remains unchallenged in language classrooms. Ethnographic Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) is applied to the case of an English language classroom at the Mexico/US border in order to specify the how and why of nationalist border reproduction. Through the conceptual lens of nationalist border practices, analysis first accounts for how class participants organized classroom practice according to clear borders between inter-related and mutually-exclusive mexicano and americano nationalist categories. The classroom site raises the possibility of border transcendence by way of border reinforcement, however, the data available depict students as border crossers who are careful not to disrupt the nationalist borders that legitimize their social and economic privilege.
©2014 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin/Boston