Although the notions of privilege and marginalization have become a common theme in research, the application of these concepts to extralocal teachers of English (ETEs; i.e., non-local, non-native, or native foreign English teachers who are not citizens of the national community in which they teach) in applied linguistics has been problematic. Much of this research has equated characteristics of marginalization with implicit bias and structural inequity, and privilege as immunity to such prejudice and discrimination, while other work has viewed these constructs as subjective feelings influencing foreign teacher identities. These problematic depictions of privilege and marginalization have resulted in a contradictory situation where an ETE may be simultaneously privileged and marginalized. Using an autoethnographic approach, this paper examines the first author’s experiences in developing their identity as a researcher while trying to critically resolve ethical dilemmas, potential criticisms, and feelings of academic inferiority and diffidence, which are seldom addressed in similar research undertakings. This article reports the learning journey of a developing researcher in creating a usable operationalization of the constructs of privilege and marginalization, with attention paid to the aspects of working contexts and social perceptions that emerged within the literature, and the influence of such factors on the self-image of ETEs in Thailand.


autoethnography, extralocal teachers of English, marginalization, privilege

Author Bio(s)

David D. Perrodin is a Foreign Expert and the Journal Manager for the Journal of Population and Social Studies with the Institute for Population and Social Research, Mahidol University. He is pursuing a PhD in Applied Linguistics for English Language Teaching at King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi. Please direct correspondence to daviddperrodin@gmail.com.

Richard Watson Todd is an Associate Professor and the Head of the Centre for Research and Services at King Mongkut's University of Technology Thonburi. He holds a PhD from the University of Liverpool. His research interests include text linguistics, computer applications in language use, and innovative research methodologies. Please direct correspondence to irictodd@kmutt.ac.th.

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