The Trajectory of a Multilingual Academic
Striving for Academic Literacy and Publication Success in a Mother Tongue
Publishing in English-medium journals has become an expectation in academia for native and non-native writers; however, a number of multilingual scholars remain committed to the dissemination of knowledge in additional languages. This study, a longitudinal case study, examined the trajectory of one multilingual academic, Caroline, who after succeeding in English for research publication purposes attempted to publish in French, her mother tongue. Drawing on interview data, journal reflections, and multiple drafts of a research article, we found Caroline’s commitment to the development of advanced mother-tongue academic literacy to be mediated by personal and professional factors as well as her access to various literacy brokers. Findings also expose the challenges Caroline faced in reading French-medium publications and in writing in her mother tongue. Highlighted in the discussion of findings are the coping strategies employed in this first and ultimately successful mother-tongue publication attempt, strategies that others may find supportive of their own similar efforts.
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