Agenda• Theoretical shifts in SLA• Identity and language learning• World Englishes and Composition (Canagarajah, 2003; 2006)• Bilingual Creativity (You, 2008, 2011)• Rhetorical analysis of business email exchanges in Turkey
Major theoretical shifts in languagestudies• Chomskian and Sassurean competence (the abstract underlying ability to use language) and performance (actual realization) divide in 1960s and 1970s- massive influence on language pedagogy!• In late 70s many linguists including Halliday, Hymes reject this distinction. Debunking the ideal speech community which was portrayed to be homogeneous.• It’s in the performance that we make the difference and challenge the centrality of competence over performance. “We perform identities with words; we also perform languages with words” (p. 73)Earlier research in SLA treated language and language learning as anidealized and homogenous process where learners only needed tolearn the target language and culture. Portraying learners in categories(motivated, unmotivated, high vs low aptitude)
Identity research in TESOL• In 90s, SLA researchers have not adequate addressed how relations of power affect the interaction in target language.• The notion of “individual” needed to be conceptualized!• Artificial distinction are drawn between the individual and the social- led to arbitrary mapping of particular factors. Why is it that learners can sometimes be motivated and extraverted sometimes the other way?• More attention needed on poststructural theory of identity and language as multiple, “a site of struggle”, ad “subject to change”
Moving from motivation toinvestment…• The concept of motivation (instrumental vs integrative) does not capture the complex relationships between the relations of power, language learning and identity.• If learners invest in a second language, they do so with the understanding that they will acquire a wider range of symbolic and material resources.• You can be very motivated, but still experience disempowering relations with the target language community due to asymmetrical power relationships (similar to the participants in Norton’s research)Norton (1995) asks: why is it that a learner may sometimes bemotivated, extraverted, and confident and sometimes unmotivated,introverted, and anxious; why in one place there may be socialdistance between a specific group of language learners and the targetlanguage community; whereas in another place the social distancemay be minimal; why a learner can sometimes speak and other timesremains silent (p. 11)
Restrictive look at identity and language usein earlier years of TESOL/AppliedLinguistics….• Social Distance Theory: Shumann (1976)“When there is great social distance between two groups, littleacculturation takes place” (p. 11) (minimal congruence between theculture of the target language speakers and the culture of thelanguage learner)- You can be in contact, but there may still be agreater social, cultural and economic distance.• Krashen’s language learning theories:1) Affective Hypothesis 2) learning vs acquisition 3) natural orderhypothesis 4) The input hypothesis-Krashen suggests thatcomprehensible input in the presence of a low affective filter is one ofthe most important causal variable in SLA All pertains to individualrather than the social context. Are we portraying learners incategories? (motivated vs unmotivated, introverted vs extraverted• Dell Hymes’ communicative competence:Hymes defines communicative competence as the goal of achieving aneffective and appropriate communication. BUT- Ability to claim theright to speak should be an integral part of an expanded notion ofcommunicative competence. Who are legitimate speakers/listeners?
From motivation to investment(Bonny Norton, 1995)• “when language learners speak, they are not only exchanging information with target language speakers but they are constantly organizing and reorganizing a sense of who they are and how they relate to the social world. Thus an investment in the target language is also an investment in a learner’s own social identity, and identity which is constantly changing across time and space” (p. 18)
Historical perspective: L2 writing at thecrossroads • ESL as a neglected area until the 1940s • First English language Institute was established in Unv. Of Michigan in 1941 by C. Fries with a strong commitment to structural linguistics—Focus on ALM • Early 60s: ESL become a part of the US universities. The production of written discourse was not one of the objectives of the program “The needs, backgrounds, learning styles, and writing strategies of most ESL students differ dramatically from those of NS students” (Reid) • Matsuda, “Disciplinary division of labor”Matsuda, P. (2001). Second Language Writing in the twentieth century. In. B. Kroll. Exploring thedynamics of second language writing. Cambridge.
Moving away from the divisionof labor Earlier approaches: • TESOL has not been too daring in working with new textual options. It referred to L1 composition for norms (e.f. writing as a neat and pure domain) (Canagarajah) • Assumption that ESL writing can be broken down neatly into linguistic components and that linguistic difficulties will disappear with ESL remedial instruction. Past decade: • Second language writing as an integral part of both composition studies and second language studies (Matsuda). • Attempts in pluralizing composition from an angle of World Englishes (Canagarajah) “ Literacy practices of code-meshing are not unusual. Students mix codes to negotiate the meaning of English texts and to compose stories or journals in expressive, creative or reflective writing. Much of this research literature demonstrates that rather than hampering the acquisition of English, the negotiation of codes can indeed facilitate it” (Canagarajah, 2006, p. 601)
Questions for today…• How do we practice SRTOL? Why is there a need to segregate codes in composition classrooms? What are some of he repercussion of this linguistic segregation?• What’s the role of WE in academic writing and composing?• What sorts of pedagogical practices legitimize the use of WE in the classroom (in multiple domains and genres)?• What sorts of theoretical shifts do we need to adopt a translingual/multilingual writing models? (language, rhetoric, text, people, flows)• How can we continue to fight with exclusionary language practices in writing studies?• How do we strike a balance to maintain students’ vernacular varieties while also teaching them the mainstream ways of doings?
Yourquestions/comments for today
Erin asks…• How can we facilitate this learning-by-doing in our pedagogy, in a way that allows student work to use language creatively, to incorporate their voices and language varieties in a way that doesnt compromise the academic context of the assignment? I like Canagarajahs suggestion of creating codemeshed academic texts, but I wonder how this works in practice: How does it get presented to students? What this would look like in an assignment? How would this be adapted for students who already speak/write in a more standard form?
Samuel says…• A very strong argument that runs through their articles is that it is not every time that lexical and syntactical varieties of WE are derived from native language interference; some times, it is the result of certain contextual demands. This is what leads You to investigate the rhetorical strategies in the postings of the virtual community of white-collar Chinese workers as independent linguistic practices from the influence of Chinese language. Canagarajah also identifies his students expression "can be able to" not as the result of native language interference, but as a conscious choice motivated by "ideological considerations." So while WE continue to be shaped by globalization, and native language interference, it can also be seen as an autonomous linguistic entity that merits inclusion in multicultural classrooms; and that also requires careful research methods as an object of inquiry.
Neil says…• I’ll note that I find the terms “expert” and “novice” that Canagarajah advocates as opposed to native or non-native speaker in these cases to be useful ones and perhaps especially useful in this discussion of World Englishes, as they can serve for a rhetorical reframing of the need for expert speakers of one of the Metropolitan Englishes to learn to be at least a novice speaker if not attempt to attain some expertise in the World Englishes with which they are most likely to come into contact with.
Moria says…• While I think that in "The Place of World Englishes" Canagarajah models much of the pedagogical work needed to empower student to negotiate the above impediments in academic settings (and You furthers this ideology in his two pieces), I argue that much of this empowerment comes from both novice and expert speakers alike sharing the stories of their linguistic navigation journeys. Just as literacy narratives offer writing researchers a way to conceive of the many literacies writers bring to bear across a range of writing situations, language participation narratives (I think thatd be a good name) offer speakers to contextualize and reflect on the strategies they used as they entered into new discourse communities. Canagarajah offers on excellent exmaple of such a narrative in his "A somewhat..." piece.
Sarah says…• I want to spend the rest of the space of this post to examine a single small part of Canagarajah’s article (2006:593) in which he suggests a fundamental shift in pedagogy that would allow students to study language and grammar in a descriptive way, rather than in the prescriptive way that it is typically taught in writing courses: “Rather than teaching grammatical rules in a normative and abstract way, we should teach communicative strategies—i.e., creative ways to negotiate the norms relevant in diverse contexts.” I think this kind of shift—which I would argue can only be achieved by introducing linguistics into students’ schooling in secondary school, or really AT ALL, as some people never take a linguistics class throughout their lives—is exactly what we need to prompt students to start thinking about language and grammar in ways that will challenge the popular language ideologies that privilege standard language and devalue “deviations” from it.
Meg says…• After reading these articles, especially those of Canagarajah, it strikes me how much of our [those of us that stand in some fashion on the periphery of a given writing situation] academic writing is about “passing” in some fashion. Canagarajah councils that his audience (other non-Western academics) to name-drop articles/books that are unavailable, to write theoretical papers rather than empirical ones, which use non- western methods of data collection, and, to above all, be thoughtful about the ways in which they infuse the text with their own voices (204). He controls his language use by identifying “sections in the RA *research article+ that would tolerate a different discourse more easily” (204). In other words, he inserts himself quietly, so as to get passed the lurking eyes of the reviewers.
Meg wonders…But, thinking about myself as on the periphery trying to gainaccess to a discourse community, I have some questions that I’mleft with at the end of our reading.• Are these “small steps” that Canagarajah identifies really moving us towards a pluralized understanding of English in any meaningful and lasting way? Or, is this simply a token move?• How do you strike a balance between “passing” and “code- meshing” in such a way that you gain access without losing your sense of voice in a text, without setting too much of yourself aside?• To what degree is gaining access to the “inside” always also about the loss of something of ourselves?
Canagarajah(2006)--Motivation• Linguistic Pluralism: Developments in English language necessitates a need to be proficient in negotiating a repertoire of World Englishes.• In the context of the sociolinguistics changes in the use of English, we need to move away from monolingual pedagogies in composition to a multilingual literacy model that embraces multiplicity of varieties and even languages.• Rather than developing a mastery in a single variety or language, students should strive for competence in variety of codes and discourses (p. 592)
The era of linguistic pluralism• Rather than simply joining a speech community, students should learn to shuttle between communities in contextually relevant ways.• Then we become less concerned with “correctness”. Language errors may in fact be seen as learner’s act of negotiating and exploring different language codes and discourses.• Speech accommodation theory, L1 is not a hindrance to L2, but a resource. Multilingualism adopt many “negotiation strategies”, promote “tolerance and patience” and corporate with their interlocutors.
Composition and WE• What are some of the areas we permit the use of non- Standard variation of English or WE?• Why is there a need to segregate codes in composition classrooms? What are some of he repercussion of this linguistic segregation?There is a need to go beyond the policy of tolerance (and makeactive use of/promote the use of vernacular varieties)
Code meshing versus code-switching• Canagarajah asserts that code-meshing calls for multidialectialism demanded by globalization. He says minority students “have to not only master the dominant varieties of English, but also know how to bring in their preferred varieties in rhetorically strategic ways” (p. 598)• How can we accommodate more than one codes within the limits of the same texts?• What are some of the ways of teaching discursive strategy of code-meshing so that minority students can get to see their own variety in academic texts?“working from within the existing rules to transform the game?
Scholars who use multivocal literacy andmultilingual writingNot limited to…• Gloria Andzaldua• Samy Alin• Geneva Smitherman• bell hooks
• Students don’t have to edit the vernacular variations.• We NEED TO make space for vernacular voices in composition which can also enable students to personally engage in the process of textual change/innovation (The negotiation of codes can facilitate the learning of standard English).• “Not every instance of nonstandard usage is an unwitting error; sometimes it is an active choice motivated by important cultural and ideological considerations” (p. 609)
Full disclosure• What do you think about Canagarajah’s disclosure about his own position and practice on code-switching and code- meshing?
Bilingual creativity/efficiencyin business email exhanges• What are some of the rhetorical/lexical/discourse level innovations do you see in these transnational business exchanges?
Group Work: Narrative analysis(if time allows) Analyzing language choices and content of the immigrant narratives: • What identities are narrated in these excerpts? Which events in their learning trajectory have become particularly signiﬁcant and which have likely been omitted as a result of this choice? • What are some of the emerging themes you see in these narratives? How do they negotiate their identities? How is second language and culture learning represented? • Examine the audience the narrator chose to address. • What are the implications of this linguistic choice for their narrative? Were the stories elicited in two languages or just one? Is it possible that proﬁciency or attrition have inﬂuenced the manner of the presentation or the amount of detail offered by the narrator? REPORT YOUR FINDINGS TO THE WHOLE CLASS