Language and Culture

Views:
 
Category: Entertainment
     
 

Presentation Description

by Dr Ania Lian, Charles Darwin University

Comments

Presentation Transcript

PowerPoint Presentation:

Language & Language Development b y Ania Lian, CDU Australia 10 March, 2013 This entire lecture is based around the concept of genre, as conceptualised by Professor Anne Freadman, University of Melbourne What is text? And how can you tell?

PowerPoint Presentation:

A text is an intersection of genres engaged for a particular purpose. Hence, we can say that if literacy is about learning the tools of communication (with oneself or others), then communication does not engage texts as such, but genres which then only together form texts. But what creates GENRE? CULTURE is the answer. Culture is the organising element of all we do.

PowerPoint Presentation:

This is a PPT about text as genre

PowerPoint Presentation:

“ There is an old question that haunts the profession of language teaching: what, we ask anxiously, is the relation between “language” and “culture”? It is an ill-formed question. If a culture is a collection of genres, the appropriate question is this: what is the function of language in any particular genre ?” Online reference no longer available, Anne Freadman, (2004) Inaugural Lecture, University of Melbourne We can now see that language provides tools for expressing that which is not linguistic. Conclusion: We need to teach not language or texts, but genre. That is, the relationship between the linguistic and the cultural components of texts. You teach one element only, you lost the text.

PowerPoint Presentation:

What is genre?

PowerPoint Presentation:

We can think of genre as a cultural protocol – created over a period of time, practised and evolving, when needed. (Lian) Any genre is a practice that derives from a local history and whose form becomes conventionalised through practice (Freadman) Culture as a heterogeneous collection of genres . ( Freadman)

PowerPoint Presentation:

Imagine We are in Paris Today, the Queen of England is having a welcoming procession through the Champs des Elysees. The crowd is summoning. People eat hot dogs, wave British flags. How do you think the wife of the French president is participating in this welcoming event? Picture http://completerunning.com/archives/2006/09/18/photo-of-the-week-paris-marathon/

PowerPoint Presentation:

Is she with the crowds, waving the British flag in one hand and holding a hot dog in another? No? Why not? The protocol or the genre of Welcoming a Queen can be effected in a number of ways, but these ways are not arbitrary. They signify how the participant positions himself or herself toward the event. The French president’s wife is expected to adopt a VIP approach to this event. Just like the Queen, she will not jump, wave hot dogs and scream with the crowds. Picture: http://collegecandy.com/tag/crazy-women /

PowerPoint Presentation:

So a genre of Welcoming a Queen can be effected in ways which themselves draw on other genres . This is important. No genre is an isolated piece of “text”. A text is an interplay of genres. See below ho wit works: A VIP genre shares some commonalties with genres which place high premium on the following qualities: not much movement, emotional distance, physical distance to the crowds etc. A Volk (popular) genre draws on genres which are all about personalising: emotion, close physical distance, lots of (cheap) food to feel the spirit of celebration, engaging in games, dressing up, playing popular music. All these qualities are genres too. So texts are a combinations of protocols that together create meaning. It is not words that have meaning. It is their use in texts as part of genre that makes us believe that they have a meaning independent of their use – this is just an illusion of the native speaker. We experience this when learning another language.

PowerPoint Presentation:

How can we utilise genre in teaching? We do this by assisting students in shifting their approach from feeling powerless to powerful. Instead of approaching a cultural context as foreign, we develop activities that teach students how to be a resourceful speaker At the same time, we as teachers learn techniques to support students in engaging with their LOTE in a meaningful, deep way. See FreAdman’s example of Collette

PowerPoint Presentation:

Now, Professor Freadman turns our attention to the following example. In 1920s, Collette, finds herself in a boxing event, in Paris. She has never been there before, does not know what’s going on (pre-TV). Even though she speaks the language of the participants, she is unable to participate as the crowds do. The first shock she quickly overcomes with the awareness that she does have resources – her past. In fact, YOU would have done the same. What would you have done? You have never seen this picture and yet you have resources to make some assumptions, e.g. a sporting event, for the rich probably (check the clean garden), somewhere in Europe? (although my Asian students thought the men were Asian!), and so on My point: nothing is totally new - we have tools to make sense of texts – everything that has meaning is a text (not always linguistic, like clothing or a scene)

PowerPoint Presentation:

Collette observed and evaluated: Were there other women there? Was it OK for her to sit where she set? Are the security guards leaving her alone. What flag represented what athlete? The French crowd was happy when the English guy got hit and vice versa. She was learning the rules of the game, by watching who did what and how people were reacting to her, to each other and to the game. We see Colette assembling an array of genres in order to interpret the genre of the boxing event

PowerPoint Presentation:

We see her “use the familiarity of what she does know to defuse the fears and the subtle threats of her first experience with the unknown .” And so, we find [Collette] exploring the resources of her own cultural knowledge, discovering its limitations, certainly, but also discovering comparisons and contrasts which she can use to shed light on the problems of the encounter. Foreignness (lack of familiarity) is simply our experience of an encounter

PowerPoint Presentation:

If Colette can assemble an array of genres in order to interpret behaviour that she finds puzzling, then we can say two things . One is that she starts out in a situation of unfamiliarity with the genre, and the other, that she comes to understand it by calling on her other cultural knowledge . Sometimes her extrapolations are unconvincing, and so she has to start again “there is some continuity between spaces” – nothing being just English or French or yours or mine ….” Anne Freadman, 2005, Inaugural Address, University of Melbourne

PowerPoint Presentation:

Conclusion When teaching literacy (the relationship between culture/genre and the linguistic elements), in LOTE or English, we should not assume that for students to understand a text, they need to understand words and grammar. Or that we need to explain the texts to them. Rather, we should develop tools (activities) that allow students explore what they know in relation to the text and how they can use that knowledge to understand a text which, initially, seemed so foreign. Our goal is not to teach as such, but to thoughtfully engage students in recognising their own power and value. The C ollette example illustrates this kind of methodology. In the course of this unit you will learn some more about the process which would support this kind of objective.

PowerPoint Presentation:

Quotes from F readman

PowerPoint Presentation:

The answer is that culture acts in dynamic relations with other sign systems, sometimes in a dominant, and sometimes in a supporting role. Moreover, the semiotic [relating to meaning] view has it that the “boundary” of a language in no way coincides with the boundaries of other sign systems, so it must follow that a language is neither geographically nor historically coextensive with a culture. Facial expressions, gestures, the public and indeed the private display of emotions, sound, the design of spaces for spectator events, the exhibition of monarchs and other public figures, care of the dead and of their resting places … the range of cultural practices that cannot be confined to the sociological extension of a given language is unlistable . It is salutary, I think, for us to consider that what we call our “own” culture is incomplete and fragmentary, that it is traversed by ignorance, that it is imperfectly owned. if it is the case that participating in a culture is not always a matter of cosy familiarity,.. we must often adapt to the unfamiliar, … culture is a process, not a thing , and … that process involves learning and sometimes getting it wrong Quotes from F readman

PowerPoint Presentation:

“A thing or idea seems meaningful only when we have several different ways to represent it - different perspectives and different associations. […] In other words, we can 'think' about it. […] So something has a ‘meaning’ only when it has a few; if we understood something just one way, we would not understand it at all. That is why the seekers of the ‘real’ meanings never find them.” ( Minsky , 1981 ).

PowerPoint Presentation:

Source: http://www.learnfrenchcdsoftware.com/french-for-kids

authorStream Live Help