Language, Literacy, and Sociocultural Studies ETDs

Publication Date

Spring 4-1-2022



The purpose of this multiple-case study was to explore how four US-born Muslim college students spatialized their linguistic and cultural identities within and across their social, academic, and religious spaces. The data were collected through detailed and in-depth data collection methods involving multiple sources of information: observations in the above-mentioned spaces, focus group interviews, autobiographies, drawings, images, and narratives. The data were analyzed through spatial analytical perspectives.

This study was drawn on Lefebvre's (1991) Spatial triad of perceived, conceived, and lived spaces, Soja's (1996) interpretation of spatiality and Thirdspace, and Bhabha's (2004) concept of Hybridity. This study presented how the US-born Muslim college students negotiate their collective and personal identities across these spaces. In the study, their schooling experiences were further analyzed to explore how they have nurtured their Muslimness.

The study findings revealed that US-born Muslim college student participants of this study developed a sense of belonging to both Muslimness and Americanness and experienced otherness also in both Muslim and American spaces. The participants further developed linguistically and culturally hybrid identities and wholistic self-perception through the enunciation of their differences in both Muslim and American spatial practices. This hybrid and whole identity; in other words, the Thirdspace of Muslimerican identity was developed through the process of a constant negotiation of their spatial practices that disrupt norms that were socially and historically imposed across social spaces.


Linguistic Identity, Cultural Identity, Spatiality, Hybridity, Thirdspace, Muslimness, Americanness

Document Type




Degree Name

Educational Linguistics

Level of Degree


Department Name

Language, Literacy, and Sociocultural Studies

First Committee Member (Chair)

Dr. Carlos LópezLeiva

Second Committee Member

Dr. Rebecca Blum Martinez

Third Committee Member

Dr. Susana Martínez-Guillem

Fourth Committee Member

Dr. Mucahit Bilici