184.108.40.206 Critical approaches to language planning and language rights
Language policy and planning is one domain of critical applied linguistics which deals with language from a political perspective. Yet, finding ways to connect language to social world is not enough; a critical approach to social relation is also required (pennycook, 2001). There is not something inherently critical about language policy. As Tollefson (1991) observes, the problem emerges when development and implementation of language policy occur in uncritical ways. Luke, McHoul, and Mey (1990) argue that the main tendency of language planning has been avoidance of directly addressing larger social and political matters within which language change, use, development, and language planning itself, are embedded. Williams (1992) critiques the whole domain of sociolinguistics for its use of a static, liberal view of society, and its inability in dealing with question of justice. Considering critical sociolinguistics (Mey, 1985), critical applied linguistics need to incorporate views of language, society, and power that are capable of dealing with questions of access, power, disparity, and difference. Dominance of certain languages over others has been questioned by Philipson (1992) through his notion of (English) linguistic imperialism. He argues that spread of English for economic and political purposes poses a major threat to other languages. What is proposed is that the right to identify with, to maintain, and to fully develop one’s mother tongue should be acknowledged as a self-evident, fundamental individual linguistic human right (Philipson, 1992).
220.127.116.11 Critical approaches to language, literacy, and workplace settings
Focus on language and literacy in various workplace and professional setting is another domain of work in applied linguistics. Going beyond the description of patterns of communication or genres of interaction between people in different workplace settings, critical applied linguistic approaches to these contexts of communication try to deal with questions of access, power, disparity, and difference. Such approaches also attempt to move toward active engagement with, and change in, these contexts of communication (pennycook, 2001). In wodak’s (1996) study of hospital interaction, in which doctors exercise power over their patients by asking questions and interrupting them, this kind of work can be seen. So, critical applied linguistics in this domain try to uncover those kinds of discourses in which for marginalizing participants particular kinds of language and literacy are imposed on them.
2.5 critical frameworks
The notion of what it means to be critical or to do critical work is a controversial one. Widdowson (2001) believes that applied linguistics as a discipline which mediates between linguistics and language teaching is of its nature a critical enterprise. From this perspective, to be critical means the appraisal of alternative versions of reality, finding the competing claims and perspectives, and the need to reconcile them. From this point of view, it can be understood that plurality of perspectives must be taken into account so as to mediate between, seeking points of commonality, and correspondence as a basis for accommodation. For Widdowson, being critical is a process in which different perspectives on a topic are evaluated. Widdowson also warns that there is another version of the critical, which ideologically sticks to a single perspective. Putting questions of language in their social context is one of the main concerns of applied linguistics. It is in this sense that another version of the critical, which is the social relevant, the contextualized, and the real, can be found. In critical applied linguistics four forms of the critical can be found: social relevance, critical thinking, emancipatory modernism, and problematizing practice.
It is not enough to link micro-relations of language in context to macro-relations of social inquiry (pennycook, 2001). That is to say, critical applied linguistics is concerned not merely with relating language contexts to social contexts, but rather does so from a perspective that views social relations as problematic. Williams (1992) argues that main concern of critical sociolinguistics is a critique of ways in which language perpetuates inequitable social relations. Therefore, a central concern of critical applied linguistics is a way of exploring language in social contexts that goes beyond mere correlation between language and society, and instead poses more critical questions to do with access, disparity, desire, difference, and resistance.
The next framework is critical thinking, which is used to describe a way of bringing more rigorous analysis to problem solving or textual analysis (pennycook, 2001). Skilled critical questioning (Brookfield, 1987) can be broken down into a set of thinking skills, a set of rules for thinking that can be taught to students. Critical applied linguistic is not supposed to develop a set of skills that make the doing of applied linguistics more rigorous, more objective, but to make applied linguistics more politically accountable.
Emancipatory modernism is another version of critical frameworks. It is based on modernist frameworks of materialism and enlightenment. Critical work in this sense has to engage with questions of inequality, injustice, wrongs, and transformation. This view develops a critique of social and political formations, but offers only a version of an alternative truth in its place: language rights replace linguistic imperialism; critical reading of texts replaces naïve readings; teaching critical issues in the classroom replaces the avoidance of politics, and so on. Instead of this sort of critical modernism, which emphasizes on emancipation and rationality, Dean (1994) proposes what he calls a problematizing practice. He argues that this is a kind of critical practice because it is unwilling to accept the taken-for-granted components of our reality and the official accounts of how they come to be the way they are. Thus, an essential element of critical work is always turning a skeptical eye toward assumptions, ideas that have become naturalized, notions that are no longer questioned. This approach to the critical seeks not so much the stable ground of an alternative truth, but rather the constant questioning of all categories. Critical applied linguistics is an amalgamation of social critique and anrcho-particularism, questioning what is meant and maintained by many of everyday categories of applied linguistics-language, learning, communication, difference, text, culture, meaning, translation, writing, literacy, assessment-as well as categories of social critique-ideology, race, gender, class, and so on.
2.6 Critical language pedagogy
Critical pedagogy argues against the traditional behaviorist and psychological paradigms that have dominated applied linguistics, and where language is treated as an object from an apolitical stance. Critical pedagogy places ELT in the students᾽ reality in order to question and challenge the socio-cultural and historical aspects involved in learning English as a lingua franca in the world. Critical pedagogy means understanding that behind the teaching of English, there are also issues of power, social inequalities, and market interests from the Centre to the Periphery.
2.6.1 Linguistic imper ialism
Linguistic imperialism or language imperialism is a linguistic concept that involves the transfer of a dominant language to other people; the transfer is essentially a demonstration of power‒traditionally, military power but also in the modern world, economic power‒and aspects of dominant culture are usually transferred along with the language (Philipson, 1992). Philipson (2000) defines English linguistic imperialism as the dominance asserted and retained by the establishment and continuous reconstitution of structural and cultural inequalities between English and other languages. Philipson’s theory critiques the historic spread of English as an international language and the language’s continued dominance. A central theme of philipson’s theory is the complex hegemonic processes which, he asserts, continue to sustain the pre-eminence of English in the world today. In his book, Philipson determines the key tenets of English language teaching methodology as the following points:
‒English is best taught monolingually (the monolingual fallacy).
‒the ideal teacher is a native speaker (the native speaker fallacy).
‒the earlier English is taught, the better the results (the early start fallacy).
‒the more English is taught, the better the results (the maximum exposure fallacy).
‒if other languages are used much, standards of English will drop (the subtractive fallacy).
Another theme in philipson’s work is “linguicism”‒the species of prejudice that leads to endangered languages becoming extinct or losing their local eminence due to the rise and competing prominence of English. Canagaragah (1999) has pointed how imported materials and methods enshrine postcolonial values, reinforcing the dominance of western, more technologically advanced ″center″ over the ″periphery″. Halliday (1994; 2005) has argued that methodological prescriptions in “BANA”contexts (i.e. British, North America and Australia) may have little or no currency in other contexts, and has argued for more contextualized sensitive and hence more appropriate methodologies which are locally generated and validated. The emergence of world Englishes (kachru, 1996) with their amazing form, function, and spread indicates that it is not confined to former British colonies alone. To remove the learning traces of English imperialism and to claim ownership of the English language learning and teaching enterprise, it is imperative to move from nativization to decolonization (Kumaravadivelu, 2003). He also indicates that a significant movement from nativization to decolonization necessarily includes meaningful shifts in policies and programs and method and materials governing English language teaching. It involves not only decentering the authority Western interests have over the English language teaching industry but also, more importantly, restoring agency to professionals in the periphery countries (Kumaravadivelu, 2003).
2.6.2 Method as a colonial construct
Pennycook (1989) argues that method is a prescriptive concept that expresses a positivist, progressivist, and patriarchal understanding of teaching. He believes that methods are never disinterested but rather instantiate relations of power. However, with the appearance of colonialism, method seems to have assumed easily identifiable colonial properties. Kumaravadivelu (2002) asserts that concept of method is a construct of marginality which gives it colonial coloration. It values everything related to the colonial Self and marginalizes everything related to subaltern Other. In the neocolonial present, like the colonial period, the use of methods is establishment of the native Self as superior and the non-native Other as inferior. Based on a review of the literature in applied linguistics, method as a construct of marginality has four inter-connected dimensions‒scholastic, linguistic, cultural, and]]>
18.104.22.168 Critical approaches to language planning and language rights