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Discourses, Communities, and Global Englishes

Series:

Roberto Cagliero and Jennifer Jenkins

The issue of English and its global versions has a lot to do with globalization at large as the most invasive factor currently shaping the way we live, produce cultural artifacts, and communicate across linguistic and political borders. The distinction between correct and incorrect usage being to some extent irrelevant within a global context, this volume looks at Global English in relation to global media, both traditional and electronic (magazines, websites, and news distribution). It then addresses the issue from the point of view of language teaching, academic discourse and world music. The final section is concerned with the role of English within communities of professionals (marketing, accounting, psychoanalysis) in an international context.
The volume includes essays from scholars who adopt different viewpoints, ranging from corpus linguistics to lexicology, sociolinguistics, and translation studies.

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Section 2Accepting English as a Lingua Franca?

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Section 2 Accepting English as a Lingua Franca? JENNIFER JENKINS ELF Still at the Gate: Attitudes towards English as a Lingua Franca 1. Introduction: native English speaker ideology In 2004, I gave a conference talk with the title ‘ELF at the gate: the future of English as a Lingua Franca’. The main purpose of that talk was to explore the gatekeeping practices of those English language teaching practitioners and applied linguists who, apparently, wished ‘nativelike’ English to retain its pole position and to prevent English as a Lingua Franca (henceforth ELF) from gaining legitimacy as an alternative. The reference to that title in my plenary talk for the GlobEng conference, was intended to highlight the fact that little had changed during the period between the two talks, and that the gatekeeping activities I had discussed in 2004 were alive and well in 2008 (and subsequently). On the other hand, the kinds of more direct verbal attacks on ELF have to an extent been replaced by more subtle attempts to undermine it. For example, a paper at the 2008 IATEFL (Inter- national Association of Teachers of English as a Foreign Language) conference in Exeter, England, by a British ELT materials writer, Hugh Dellar, had the title ‘ELF and other fairy stories’. A paper at the GlobEng conference itself by another materials writer, Alan Maley, went by the title of ‘The fact of global English and the fic- tion of ELF’. Similarly, Waters accused ELF of political incorrect- ness, “a PC-based stance...

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