Jonathan Rosa is Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Education, Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, and, by courtesy, Departments of Anthropology, Linguistics, and Comparative Literature at Stanford University. Dr. Rosa is also Director of Stanford’s Program in Chicanx-Latinx Studies and Co-Director of the Center for Global Ethnography. His research examines the co-naturalization of language and race as a key feature of modern governance. Specifically, he tracks colonially structured interrelations among racial marginalization, linguistic stigmatization, and institutional inequity. Dr. Rosa collaborates with local communities to investigate these phenomena and develop tools for understanding and challenging the forms of disparity to which they correspond. This community-based approach to research, teaching, and service reflects a vision of scholarship as a platform for imagining and enacting more just societies. Dr. Rosa is author of the award-winning book Looking like a Language, Sounding like a Race: Raciolinguistic Ideologies and the Learning of Latinidad (2019, Oxford University Press) and co-editor of the volume Language and Social Justice in Practice (2019, Routledge). His work has appeared in scholarly journals such as the Harvard Educational Review, American Ethnologist, Journal of Linguistic Anthropology, and Language in Society, as well as media outlets such as The New York Times, The Nation, NPR, and Univision. Dr. Rosa obtained his M.A. and Ph.D. from the Department of Anthropology at the University of Chicago, and his B.A. in Linguistics and Educational Studies from Swarthmore College.

Academic Appointments

  • Associate Professor, Graduate School of Education
  • Associate Professor (By courtesy), Linguistics
  • Associate Professor (By courtesy), Anthropology
  • Associate Professor (By courtesy), Comparative Literature

Honors & Awards

  • First Book Award (Looking like a Language, Sounding like a Race), American Association for Applied Linguistics (2021)
  • Prose Award for Excellence in Language & Linguistics (Looking like a Language, Sounding like a Race), Association of American Publishers (2020)
  • Charles A. Ferguson Award for Outstanding Scholarship, Center for Applied Linguistics (2018)

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations

  • Assistant Professor, Education (also, Anthropology, Linguistics, Comparative Race & Ethnic Studies), Stanford University (2015 - 2020)
  • Postdoctoral Fellow, Latina/o Studies Program, Northwestern University (2015 - 2016)
  • Assistant Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Massachusetts Amherst (2011 - 2015)
  • Faculty Fellow, Latina/o Studies Program, Department of Social and Cultural Analysis, New York University (2010 - 2011)

Program Affiliations

  • Center for Latin American Studies

Professional Education

  • Ph.D., University of Chicago, Sociocultural and Linguistic Anthropology (2010)
  • M.A., University of Chicago, Sociocultural and Linguistic Anthropology (2006)
  • B.A., Swarthmore College, Linguistics and Educational Studies (2003)

Research Interests

  • Diversity and Identity
  • Immigrants and Immigration
  • Literacy and Language
  • Poverty and Inequality
  • Race and Ethnicity
  • Sociology
  • Teachers and Teaching

Current Research and Scholarly Interests

Dr. Rosa’s book, Looking like a Language, Sounding like a Race: Raciolingusitic Ideologies and the Learning of Latinidad (2019, Oxford University Press), presents an ethnographic analysis of how administrators in a Chicago public high school whose student body is more than 90% Mexican and Puerto Rican seek to transform “at risk” Latinx youth into “young Latino professionals.” This intersectional mobility project paradoxically positions Latinx identity as the cause of and solution to educational underachievement. As a result, students must learn to be – and sound – “Latino” in highly studied ways. Students respond to anxieties surrounding their ascribed identities by symbolically remapping borders between nations, languages, ethnoracial categories, and institutional contexts. This reimagining of political, linguistic, cultural, and educational borders reflects the complex interplay between racialization and socialization for Latinx youth. The manuscript argues that this local scene is a key site in which to track broader structures of educational inequity by denaturalizing categories, differences, and modes of recognition through which raciolinguistic exclusion is systematically reproduced across contexts.

2022-23 Courses

Stanford Advisees

All Publications

  • Premises, Pitfalls, and Possibilities of Undoing Competence: A Response to Open Peer Commentaries LANGUAGE LEARNING Rosa, J., Flores, N. 2023

    View details for DOI 10.1111/lang.12564

    View details for Web of Science ID 000941147200001

  • Undoing Competence: Coloniality, Homogeneity, and the Overrepresentation of Whiteness in Applied Linguistics LANGUAGE LEARNING Flores, N., Rosa, J. 2022

    View details for DOI 10.1111/lang.12528

    View details for Web of Science ID 000878243300001

  • Decolonization, Language, and Race in Applied Linguistics and Social Justice APPLIED LINGUISTICS Rosa, J., Flores, N. 2021; 42 (6): 1162-1167
  • Introduction: Language and White Supremacy JOURNAL OF LINGUISTIC ANTHROPOLOGY Smalls, K. A., Spears, A. K., Rosa, J. 2021; 31 (2): 152-156

    View details for DOI 10.1111/jola.12329

    View details for Web of Science ID 000695811200002

  • Raciontologies: Rethinking Anthropological Accounts of Institutional Racism and Enactments of White Supremacy in the United States AMERICAN ANTHROPOLOGIST Rosa, J., Diaz, V. 2019

    View details for DOI 10.1111/aman.13353

    View details for Web of Science ID 000504832000001

  • Bringing Race Into Second Language Acquisition MODERN LANGUAGE JOURNAL Flores, N., Rosa, J. 2019; 103: 145–51

    View details for DOI 10.1111/modl.12523

    View details for Web of Science ID 000456092700012

  • Looking like a language, sounding like a race: Raciolinguistic ideologies and the learning of Latinidad Rosa, J. Oxford University Press, USA. 2019
  • Language and Social Justice in Practice Avineri, N., Graham, L. R., Johnson, E. J., Riner, R. C., Rosa, J. Routledge. 2018
  • Unsettling race and language: Toward a raciolinguistic perspective LANGUAGE IN SOCIETY Rosa, J., Flores, N. 2017; 46 (5): 621–47
  • Deprovincializing Trump, decolonizing diversity, and unsettling anthropology AMERICAN ETHNOLOGIST Rosa, J., Bonilla, Y. 2017; 44 (2): 201–8

    View details for DOI 10.1111/amet.12468

    View details for Web of Science ID 000404546100002

  • Do you hear what I hear? Raciolinguistic ideologies and culturally sustaining pedagogies Culturally sustaining pedagogies: Teaching and learning for justice in a changing world Rosa, J., Flores, N. 2017: 175-190
  • Diaspora and language ROUTLEDGE HANDBOOK OF MIGRATION AND LANGUAGE Rosa, J., Trivedi, S., Canagarajah, S. 2017: 330–46
  • Standardization, Racialization, Languagelessness: Raciolinguistic Ideologies across Communicative Contexts JOURNAL OF LINGUISTIC ANTHROPOLOGY Rosa, J. D. 2016; 26 (2): 162-183

    View details for DOI 10.1111/jola.12116

    View details for Web of Science ID 000383263500003

  • Racializing language, regimenting Latinas/os: Chronotope, social tense, and American raciolinguistic futures LANGUAGE & COMMUNICATION Rosa, J. 2016; 46: 106-117
  • Undoing Appropriateness: Raciolinguistic Ideologies and Language Diversity in Education HARVARD EDUCATIONAL REVIEW Flores, N., Rosa, J. 2015; 85 (2): 7–29
  • Invited Forum: Bridging the "Language Gap" JOURNAL OF LINGUISTIC ANTHROPOLOGY Avineri, N., Johnson, E., Brice-Heath, S., McCarty, T., Ochs, E., Kremer-Sadlik, T., Blum, S., Zentella, A. C., Rosa, J., Flores, N., Alim, H. S., Paris, D. 2015; 25 (1): 66-86

    View details for DOI 10.1111/jola.12071

    View details for Web of Science ID 000354725800004

  • Digital protest, hashtag ethnography, and the racial politics of social media in the United States AMERICAN ETHNOLOGIST Bonilla, Y., Rosa, J. 2015; 42 (1): 4–17

    View details for DOI 10.1111/amet.12112

    View details for Web of Science ID 000349898500002

  • Rethinking Gaps Literacies and Languages in Participatory Cultures JOURNAL OF ADOLESCENT & ADULT LITERACY Jocson, K., Rosa, J., Curwood, J. 2015; 58 (5): 372–74

    View details for DOI 10.1002/jaal.368

    View details for Web of Science ID 000348862600004

  • On Latin@s and the Immigration Debate AMERICAN ANTHROPOLOGIST Davila, A., Mullings, L., Rosaldo, R., Plascencia, L. B., Chavez, L. R., Magana, R., Rosas, G., Aparicio, A., Najera, L., Zavella, P., Galvez, A., Rosa, J. D. 2014; 116 (1): 146–59

    View details for DOI 10.1111/aman.12069

    View details for Web of Science ID 000333215100019