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teaching culture?

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  • karenstanleyma
    In response to Pete s feeling that teaching culture is not a good idea, I have the usual teacher response to give: It depends. In the case that started the
    Message 1 of 1 , Sep 8, 2005
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      In response to Pete's feeling that teaching culture is not
      a good idea, I have the usual teacher response to give:
      It depends.

      In the case that started the thread, the instructor has
      been specifically assigned to teach a course in Australian
      culture. In other cases, students who are English majors will
      certainly be reading/studying literature written in English,
      and understanding that literature will be helped at times
      (often?) through understanding the cultural background from
      which it springs, whether it's Chinua Achebe in West Africa
      or Julia Alvarez writing in English about her Dominican-
      Republic-origin family in New York.

      For English students who are going to work or study outside
      of China in a particular country, understanding some of that
      culture before they land in the midst of it can be extremely
      helpful.

      For basic language classes in China for language students
      who are not planning to be English majors or live in a
      specific English-speaking country in the future, I agree
      with Pete, it's unlikely that a lot of teaching of culture
      is a good way to use classroom time, though occasional
      bits are usually interesting and can also lead students
      to investigate their own cultures.

      Karen

      karen.stanley @ cpcc.edu
      Central Piedmont Community College
      Charlotte, North Carolina, USA
      http://people.cpcc.edu/~skh6004e
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