Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.
{{
Teaching English asTeaching English as
‘Second Language’ in‘Second Language’ in
India by Kapil KapoorIndia by Kapil Kap...
 Concept of English as ‘Second Language’ is notConcept of English as ‘Second Language’ is not
a purely pedagogic construc...
 The concept is designed to give English aThe concept is designed to give English a
pre-eminent position relative to the ...
 It is then argued that there is a fundamentalIt is then argued that there is a fundamental
illogicity in treating Englis...
 The term ‘second language’ is understoodThe term ‘second language’ is understood
in two different ways. 1) English is se...
 From Macaulay to Mulayam Singh, we haveFrom Macaulay to Mulayam Singh, we have
seen how in India the movement from one t...
 To achieve this, the whole conceptualTo achieve this, the whole conceptual
structure has been developed andstructure has...
 First, the concept of Modernization andFirst, the concept of Modernization and
internationalism were invoked andinternat...
 This need gave birth to ‘language planning’This need gave birth to ‘language planning’
which was in fact the linguistic ...
 It’s major strength argued to be the fact thatIt’s major strength argued to be the fact that
it cannot be identified wit...
 A whole mythology got built up around theA whole mythology got built up around the
role of English in which the centralr...
4) English is the library language; English is4) English is the library language; English is
thethe
language of reasonlang...
 These propositions went into the question ofThese propositions went into the question of
the place and weightage of Engl...
 It notes thatIt notes that language questionlanguage question is the mostis the most
complicated problem that the countr...
 Of course it became a complicated problemOf course it became a complicated problem
because the national course was notbe...
 And the famous three language formula isAnd the famous three language formula is
the product of this thinking and policy...
 Secondly, It ironically restricted the use ofSecondly, It ironically restricted the use of
Hindi in non Hindi areas by a...
 If your aim is to produce whole generationsIf your aim is to produce whole generations
of young people who are not just ...
 But the standards of English, the success inBut the standards of English, the success in
teaching English, have always f...
 The meetings of ELT experts have becomeThe meetings of ELT experts have become
seasonal phenomenon like the gatherings o...
 We began by drawing attention to the twoWe began by drawing attention to the two
denotations of the termsdenotations of ...
 The confusion disrupts the effort to promoteThe confusion disrupts the effort to promote
English – in fact is the ruptur...
 What is L2? What is L3? What is the firstWhat is L2? What is L3? What is the first
language? These terms get different d...
 The Second Language, i.e.The Second Language, i.e.L2 is that languageL2 is that language
which is introduced compulsoril...
 The Third Language L3 is introducedThe Third Language L3 is introduced
simultaneously or after the initiation of seconds...
 Knowledge is growing at a breath-takingKnowledge is growing at a breath-taking
pace. English should primarily be taught ...
 ..The purpose of the second language in..The purpose of the second language in
relation to the first (language) may be a...
 It is often suggested that the second-It is often suggested that the second-
language objectives would be:language objec...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5
×

M.A. Sem.3 ELT1 Unit 1 Teaching English as 'Second Language' in India by Kapil Kapoor

993 views

Published on

Kapil Kapoor, a JNU ELT Scholar, marks the reflections of English Teaching in India as Second Language in this research paper. The presentation is an excerpt from his essay. The essay also reflects socio-political conditions, language movements, and acceptance of English as Second Language (L2) in India, The fundamentals of ELT i.e. L1, L2, L3 and more.. What are the problems of Teaching English in India? What are the possible solutions to those problems? Where do we leg behind in understanding of Teaching English? Kapil Kapoor sarcastically compares the modern language learning with the traditional language learning. Kapil narrates The three language formula and the importance of Methodology in this essay. A wonderful comparison of Western and Indian English Teaching is given by Kapil Kapoor.

Published in: Education
  • Be the first to comment

  • Be the first to like this

M.A. Sem.3 ELT1 Unit 1 Teaching English as 'Second Language' in India by Kapil Kapoor

  1. 1. {{ Teaching English asTeaching English as ‘Second Language’ in‘Second Language’ in India by Kapil KapoorIndia by Kapil Kapoor (JNU, Delhi)(JNU, Delhi) Excerpt formExcerpt form
  2. 2.  Concept of English as ‘Second Language’ is notConcept of English as ‘Second Language’ is not a purely pedagogic construct and has to bea purely pedagogic construct and has to be properly understood in the larger historical,properly understood in the larger historical, social and educational context.social and educational context.  It is shown to be a pert of that mythology ofIt is shown to be a pert of that mythology of English that has been assiduously (diligently)English that has been assiduously (diligently) cultivated by the interested elite to suchcultivated by the interested elite to such deleterious (harmful) effects on the Indiandeleterious (harmful) effects on the Indian mind and culture.mind and culture. AbstractAbstract
  3. 3.  The concept is designed to give English aThe concept is designed to give English a pre-eminent position relative to the Indianpre-eminent position relative to the Indian languages in the educational, and,languages in the educational, and, consequently the socio-political set up.consequently the socio-political set up.  It has also been employed to discourage theIt has also been employed to discourage the study and learning of classical languages,study and learning of classical languages, particularly, Sanskrit which has contributedparticularly, Sanskrit which has contributed to the rootlessness of the young Indianto the rootlessness of the young Indian minds.minds.
  4. 4.  It is then argued that there is a fundamentalIt is then argued that there is a fundamental illogicity in treating English as a secondillogicity in treating English as a second language along with other Indian languages,language along with other Indian languages, and it is this illogicity which accounts for theand it is this illogicity which accounts for the poor ‘standards’ of English in spite of thepoor ‘standards’ of English in spite of the tremendous investments in ELT, thetremendous investments in ELT, the situation can only be reminded bysituation can only be reminded by recognising and redefining the role and goalsrecognising and redefining the role and goals of English as a foreign language and byof English as a foreign language and by choosing the right language teaching theorieschoosing the right language teaching theories and practices. Else no amount ofand practices. Else no amount of methodology and technology would succeed.methodology and technology would succeed.
  5. 5.  The term ‘second language’ is understoodThe term ‘second language’ is understood in two different ways. 1) English is secondin two different ways. 1) English is second language after one or more Indianlanguage after one or more Indian languages, which are primary and morelanguages, which are primary and more significantly, 2) in school education, thesignificantly, 2) in school education, the second language is what is introduced aftersecond language is what is introduced after the primary stage and has a pedagogical asthe primary stage and has a pedagogical as well as a functional definition, particularitywell as a functional definition, particularity in the context of the ‘three-languagein the context of the ‘three-language formula’.formula’.
  6. 6.  From Macaulay to Mulayam Singh, we haveFrom Macaulay to Mulayam Singh, we have seen how in India the movement from one toseen how in India the movement from one to the other. Following the withdrawal of thethe other. Following the withdrawal of the British from India, the language questionBritish from India, the language question naturally came to the ‘English knowing’naturally came to the ‘English knowing’ ruling class demanded the perpetuationruling class demanded the perpetuation (continuation) of English so that the vast(continuation) of English so that the vast majority of people would continue to remainmajority of people would continue to remain outside the privileged power-structure. Tooutside the privileged power-structure. To achieve this, a whole conceptual structureachieve this, a whole conceptual structure has been developed and manipulated.has been developed and manipulated.
  7. 7.  To achieve this, the whole conceptualTo achieve this, the whole conceptual structure has been developed andstructure has been developed and manipulated. This conceptual structure hasmanipulated. This conceptual structure has three parts; Modernization, Mythology, andthree parts; Modernization, Mythology, and Language PolicyLanguage Policy
  8. 8.  First, the concept of Modernization andFirst, the concept of Modernization and internationalism were invoked andinternationalism were invoked and English became the language of bothEnglish became the language of both modernization and internationalism andmodernization and internationalism and by implication the Indian languagesby implication the Indian languages became associated with ‘tradition’ whichbecame associated with ‘tradition’ which by definition was assumed to be anti-by definition was assumed to be anti- modern and backward looking. Oncemodern and backward looking. Once taken to be true, the next step in thetaken to be true, the next step in the argument was to define the role andargument was to define the role and relationship of English vis-à-vis the Indianrelationship of English vis-à-vis the Indian Languages.Languages. ModernizationModernization
  9. 9.  This need gave birth to ‘language planning’This need gave birth to ‘language planning’ which was in fact the linguistic analogue of awhich was in fact the linguistic analogue of a particular politics. Language planning wasparticular politics. Language planning was prepared with a whole set of lexical weaponryprepared with a whole set of lexical weaponry that gradually created a new mythology. Majorthat gradually created a new mythology. Major Indian languages became in this discipline,Indian languages became in this discipline, ‘regional languages’ – notice that ‘regional’ is‘regional languages’ – notice that ‘regional’ is in opposition to ‘national’ – and even Hindi is ain opposition to ‘national’ – and even Hindi is a regional language which has been accorded theregional language which has been accorded the status of an official language of the Union andstatus of an official language of the Union and some states. English, the other official languagesome states. English, the other official language did not suffer from this disability!did not suffer from this disability! MythologyMythology
  10. 10.  It’s major strength argued to be the fact thatIt’s major strength argued to be the fact that it cannot be identified with anyone regionit cannot be identified with anyone region and therefore English is one ‘pan-Indian’and therefore English is one ‘pan-Indian’ Language that would promoteLanguage that would promote NationalNational IntegrationIntegration, as no other language would. So, as no other language would. So while the Indian languages, as regionalwhile the Indian languages, as regional languages, promotelanguages, promote divisiveness(disagreement) anddivisiveness(disagreement) and fissiparous(inclined to cause or undergofissiparous(inclined to cause or undergo division into separate parts or groups)division into separate parts or groups) tendencies.tendencies.
  11. 11.  A whole mythology got built up around theA whole mythology got built up around the role of English in which the centralrole of English in which the central metaphor is the metaphor of the ‘window’metaphor is the metaphor of the ‘window’ 1.1. English is the language of knowledgeEnglish is the language of knowledge (science and technology)(science and technology) 2.2. English is the language of liberalEnglish is the language of liberal modern thinkingmodern thinking 3.3. English is our window on the worldEnglish is our window on the world
  12. 12. 4) English is the library language; English is4) English is the library language; English is thethe language of reasonlanguage of reason 5) English is the link language5) English is the link language 6) English is the lingua-franca. As we say the6) English is the lingua-franca. As we say the metaphor of the ‘window’ is central in thismetaphor of the ‘window’ is central in this structure, in which Indian Languages are thestructure, in which Indian Languages are the ‘walls’, that enclose us in ‘darkness’ and English is‘walls’, that enclose us in ‘darkness’ and English is the ‘window’ that, lets in the ‘light’ of reason andthe ‘window’ that, lets in the ‘light’ of reason and modernization. We have elsewhere shown themodernization. We have elsewhere shown the hollowness of each of these claims (K. Kapoor andhollowness of each of these claims (K. Kapoor and R.S.Gupta:1990. Preface)R.S.Gupta:1990. Preface)
  13. 13.  These propositions went into the question ofThese propositions went into the question of the place and weightage of English inthe place and weightage of English in education, particularly school education. Howeducation, particularly school education. How important language planning is and how itimportant language planning is and how it evolved is very well stated by one of theevolved is very well stated by one of the pertinent reports, the report of the Educationpertinent reports, the report of the Education Commission 1964-66, which stated that aCommission 1964-66, which stated that a comprehensive language policy will be a greatcomprehensive language policy will be a great help in social and national integration.help in social and national integration.
  14. 14.  It notes thatIt notes that language questionlanguage question is the mostis the most complicated problem that the country has facedcomplicated problem that the country has faced since independence and one that has resisted asince independence and one that has resisted a solution.solution.  It goes on to add that on account ofIt goes on to add that on account of educational, cultural and political reasons theeducational, cultural and political reasons the problem needs to be satisfactorily and urgentlyproblem needs to be satisfactorily and urgently resolved. This is again no place to ask why theresolved. This is again no place to ask why the question became the problem ‘sincequestion became the problem ‘since independence’ or why and what politicalindependence’ or why and what political reasons were involved or should have beenreasons were involved or should have been involved.involved.
  15. 15.  Of course it became a complicated problemOf course it became a complicated problem because the national course was notbecause the national course was not adopted. , which would have been toadopted. , which would have been to immediately define and restruct English as aimmediately define and restruct English as a foreign language and make the completeforeign language and make the complete switch over to Indian languages even at theswitch over to Indian languages even at the risk of educational anarchy for a few years.risk of educational anarchy for a few years. Instead English was sought to be promotedInstead English was sought to be promoted more than any other Indian language.more than any other Indian language.
  16. 16.  And the famous three language formula isAnd the famous three language formula is the product of this thinking and policy. Itsthe product of this thinking and policy. Its chief contribution was to make English anchief contribution was to make English an integral part of school education in India. Inintegral part of school education in India. In doing so, it pitied English against all Indiandoing so, it pitied English against all Indian languages in as far as a student who wouldlanguages in as far as a student who would want to or had the will or time to learnwant to or had the will or time to learn another language in addition to the languageanother language in addition to the language of this region would now necessarily learnof this region would now necessarily learn English, and not another Indian language.English, and not another Indian language.
  17. 17.  Secondly, It ironically restricted the use ofSecondly, It ironically restricted the use of Hindi in non Hindi areas by allowing theHindi in non Hindi areas by allowing the students to learn English as second languagestudents to learn English as second language of this region would now necessarily learnof this region would now necessarily learn English, and not another Indian language.English, and not another Indian language. And finally, the three-language formula, theAnd finally, the three-language formula, the study and learning of Sanskrit has sufferedstudy and learning of Sanskrit has suffered major decline. This, of course, serves themajor decline. This, of course, serves the same political purpose, which in the firstsame political purpose, which in the first instance sought the promotion of English.instance sought the promotion of English.
  18. 18.  If your aim is to produce whole generationsIf your aim is to produce whole generations of young people who are not just ignorant ofof young people who are not just ignorant of their identity and their heritage, but have, intheir identity and their heritage, but have, in fact a positive contempt for it, then they mustfact a positive contempt for it, then they must not be taught Sanskrit, the language of thenot be taught Sanskrit, the language of the powerful heritage and the unique Indianpowerful heritage and the unique Indian identity, and they must be taught English andidentity, and they must be taught English and through that the western ‘values’, so that thethrough that the western ‘values’, so that the Indian youth naturally respects the ‘modern’,Indian youth naturally respects the ‘modern’, English-education semi-quarter or threeEnglish-education semi-quarter or three quarters westernized Indians, and acceptsquarters westernized Indians, and accepts them as natural and fit rulers.them as natural and fit rulers.
  19. 19.  But the standards of English, the success inBut the standards of English, the success in teaching English, have always fallen short ofteaching English, have always fallen short of the ideal or even the minimum, and we knowthe ideal or even the minimum, and we know how several education commission andhow several education commission and committees went into the question ofcommittees went into the question of declining standards in English and madedeclining standards in English and made series of recommendations pertaining toseries of recommendations pertaining to syllabi, curriculum, weightage, teacher-syllabi, curriculum, weightage, teacher- training, methodology, learning-teachingtraining, methodology, learning-teaching theories, and what have you. But nothingtheories, and what have you. But nothing seems to have worked.seems to have worked.
  20. 20.  The meetings of ELT experts have becomeThe meetings of ELT experts have become seasonal phenomenon like the gatherings ofseasonal phenomenon like the gatherings of the Egyptologists who meet every year whenthe Egyptologists who meet every year when the Nile has receded after the seasonalthe Nile has receded after the seasonal floods. The failure in teaching English as afloods. The failure in teaching English as a second language stems nor from the theory,second language stems nor from the theory, training and mechanics of language teaching,training and mechanics of language teaching, but from the intrinsic conceptualbut from the intrinsic conceptual inappropriateness in accepting English asinappropriateness in accepting English as second language, L2, pedagogically andsecond language, L2, pedagogically and linguistically.linguistically.
  21. 21.  We began by drawing attention to the twoWe began by drawing attention to the two denotations of the termsdenotations of the terms second language –second language – thethe ELT definition which recognizes the ratherELT definition which recognizes the rather restricted specific functions, goals, andrestricted specific functions, goals, and instructional objectives, it is quite clear thatinstructional objectives, it is quite clear that English is really only L3 – a foreign languageEnglish is really only L3 – a foreign language put to some specific, restricted uses in theput to some specific, restricted uses in the Indian multilingual context, for the functions,Indian multilingual context, for the functions, goals and objectives of L2, as defined forgoals and objectives of L2, as defined for Hindi are virtually unattainable and makeHindi are virtually unattainable and make little sense with reference to English.little sense with reference to English.
  22. 22.  The confusion disrupts the effort to promoteThe confusion disrupts the effort to promote English – in fact is the rupture through whichEnglish – in fact is the rupture through which the mistaken intention of nativizing anthe mistaken intention of nativizing an essentially foreign language – stands revealed.essentially foreign language – stands revealed. For a foreign language like English cannot beFor a foreign language like English cannot be thethe linguisticlinguistic second language – this rolesecond language – this role rightfully belongs to an Indian language,rightfully belongs to an Indian language, regional or any other.regional or any other.
  23. 23.  What is L2? What is L3? What is the firstWhat is L2? What is L3? What is the first language? These terms get different definitionslanguage? These terms get different definitions depending on how there are defined –depending on how there are defined – chronologically, linguistically, from the point ofchronologically, linguistically, from the point of view of language policy or pedagogically.view of language policy or pedagogically.
  24. 24.  The Second Language, i.e.The Second Language, i.e.L2 is that languageL2 is that language which is introduced compulsorily either atwhich is introduced compulsorily either at the end of primary stage or in the beginningthe end of primary stage or in the beginning of the lower secondary stage after theof the lower secondary stage after the attainment of sufficient proficiency in theattainment of sufficient proficiency in the first language by the learner. The mainfirst language by the learner. The main objective of the second language is to enableobjective of the second language is to enable the speaker for wider participation in society,the speaker for wider participation in society, and the nation leading toand the nation leading to secondarysecondary socialization.socialization. Hence the second languageHence the second language usually either theusually either the state official languagestate official language oror national languagenational language..
  25. 25.  The Third Language L3 is introducedThe Third Language L3 is introduced simultaneously or after the initiation of secondsimultaneously or after the initiation of second language – generally in grade-VIII. The mainlanguage – generally in grade-VIII. The main objective of introducing the third language is toobjective of introducing the third language is to prepare the learner for all-Indian mobilityprepare the learner for all-Indian mobility leading to tertiary socialization and give theleading to tertiary socialization and give the learner a working knowledge of the languagelearner a working knowledge of the language so that the learner may read, comprehend andso that the learner may read, comprehend and express correctly in that language.express correctly in that language.
  26. 26.  Knowledge is growing at a breath-takingKnowledge is growing at a breath-taking pace. English should primarily be taught sopace. English should primarily be taught so that at the end of a four/five year course:that at the end of a four/five year course: a)a) It can be used as aIt can be used as a library languagelibrary language toto enable the learner to keep abreast (up-enable the learner to keep abreast (up- to-date) of the latest accretionsto-date) of the latest accretions (additions) to the different fields of(additions) to the different fields of knowledge, andknowledge, and b)b) It can enable the learner to pursueIt can enable the learner to pursue higher/professional educationhigher/professional education
  27. 27.  ..The purpose of the second language in..The purpose of the second language in relation to the first (language) may be asrelation to the first (language) may be as follows according to National Council offollows according to National Council of Educational Research & Training (NCERT)Educational Research & Training (NCERT) report:report:  To help the individual in maintaining hisTo help the individual in maintaining his personal relations with the people beyondpersonal relations with the people beyond his linguistic grouphis linguistic group  To help the individual to carry on hisTo help the individual to carry on his business purposes beyond his linguisticbusiness purposes beyond his linguistic group To help the individual to feel hisgroup To help the individual to feel his identification with larger group, may beidentification with larger group, may be the nationthe nation
  28. 28.  It is often suggested that the second-It is often suggested that the second- language objectives would be:language objectives would be:  Communicating information in dailyCommunicating information in daily conversation and correspondenceconversation and correspondence

×