This thesis examines language and citizenship laws in Latvia to determine how they have been used to change Latvia's internal ethnic identity and external geopolitical relations. A discourse analysis of two of the region's major news sources is the central method for data analysis, allowing for a comparison of Russian and Latvian media portrayals of this situation. By examining newspapers from the region, my thesis considers how the Russian speaking population in Latvia is adapting to their situation. Secondly, the research explores how the Latvian government is and is not encouraging the merging of the ethnic Russian and Latvian speaking identities to form a new national identity. Language laws and educational reforms are important processes that help promote national identity, and both are examined in this research. The theoretical framework of this thesis draws from a combination of identity, geopolitical, and moral geography theories.
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