Date of Award

Spring 4-25-2016

Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



First Advisor

Edward Schortman


This thesis explores the relationship between English-Spanish bilingual practices and Latino identity in three television series: ¿Que Pasa, U.S.A? (1977-1980), Mia Mundo (2012-2014), and Jane the Virgin (2014-Present). Making use of Bhatt and Bolonyai’s (2010) model of codeswitching and Barth’s Boundary Theory (1969), I analyze the strategic uses of language depicted on each show and the broader linguistic and cultural imaginaries they mobilize. I set these media texts in relation to historically-bound structures of power (both material and ideological) that delimit Latinos’ possibilities for self-definition. Ultimately, I seek to investigate the way in which these shows utilize linguistic practices that have been traditionally outside the realm of dominant constructions of ethnic authenticity and American citizenship.