Kiernan, Patrick James (2008)
Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham.
This is the second of three modules concerned with narrative and identity in English language teaching. In Module 1, I introduced conversational narrative and examined ways in which descriptions of conversational narrative might be applicable to the development of pedagogic models for teaching English to learners in Japan. I concluded that there was a need to further explore narrative in the local context. This module does this, but takes a step back from the concern with pedagogical descriptions to consider narrative in the teaching context. It focuses on the native speaker as a central narrative concept within English language education, and explores the theoretical and practical role of the native speaker in Japan today. This module (Part 1) introduces theoretical perspectives, and considers the appropriation of the native speaker in Japanese high school textbooks. I argue that the ideological emphasis on the native speaker has been most significantly undermined by the development of English as an international language, and that the cultural discourse of the native speaker in Japanese textbooks implies a narrow brand of internationalisation that is closely related to nationalistic concerns with Japan’s status in the world today. Part 2 focuses on native English speaking teachers (NESTs) in Japan. I consider the ways in which theoretical notions of the native speaker are reflected in the experience and attitudes of NESTs.
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