INSTITUTO DE INVESTIGACIONES EN HUMANIDADES Y CIENCIAS SOCIALES
Unidad Ejecutora - UE
New Perspectives on Intercultural Language Research and Teaching: Exploring Learners? Understandings of Texts from Other Cultures
MICHAEL BYRAM; MELINA PORTO
Routledge Research in Education series. Routledge, Taylor & Francis
Lugar: NY; Año: 2016 p. 172
Aclaración: El libro fue escrito en co-autoría con Michael Byram, el referente más importante en la temática. Cuenta con un prólogo escrito por Henry Widdowson, una eminencia de la lingüística aplicada.The purpose of this book is to focus on the cultural dimension of reading in a foreign language located within an analysis of how reading - both in general and in particular in a foreign language - is currently conceived and has been so in the past. The book will specifically address questions of how reading research has developed and how a new approach is needed to take into account the cultural dimension which has hitherto been under-represented in the research field. It will simultaneously show how research and pedagogy are closely related in this new approach. The field of reading comprehension is broad and varied. Reading comprehension in native language and foreign/second language contexts has been studied for years in different disciplines, from psychology (social and cognitive) to linguistics, applied linguistics, cultural studies, literary studies, second language acquisition and others. There are as many studies as the variables involved in the processes of reading comprehension both in L1 and L2. However, the investigation of the cultural dimension of foreign language reading is limited and insufficient, and the book will rectify this by providing a comprehensive approach illustrated by an empirical study of English as a Foreign Language reading in Argentina. The book argues that cultural understanding in reading, in particular foreign language reading, has been investigated using inappropriate theoretical rationales (framed for instance within static and essentialist notions of culture and identity) as well as inadequate methodological designs (for instance, the traditional use of the free recall protocol). As an alternative, the book presents and illustrates a new approach which is more authentic in its methods of investigating reading, more educational in its purposes and more supportive of international understanding as an aim of language teaching in general and English language teaching (ELT) in particular. Furthermore, considering that the book illustrates the argument and the new approach with data from an Argentine context, it also presents a discussion of the notion of ´periphery´ as used in much ELT writing and introduces the Argentine case as a valid and significant perspective from where to add to what is known in the field. Because the book presents and illustrates the new approach with a text in the native language of the readers who participated in the empirical study (Spanish) as well as texts in a foreign language (English), it is relevant to those involved in the field of native and foreign language reading. The ELT perspective is anecdotal and illustrative of the foreign language dimension in general, for the book speaks to the researcher and teacher of reading in any native and/or foreign language context.