Interrelationship Between Culture and English Language Teaching

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By Mrs.Faezeh Shojaei
PhD Student of Linguistics at Central Institute of Indian Languages-University of Mysore 2012 Email: f_shojae24@yahoo.com
Interrelationship between Culture and English Language Teaching Abstract: The relationship between language and culture is deeply rooted. Language is used to maintain and convey culture and cultural ties. Different ideas stem from differing language use within one’s culture and the whole intertwining of these relationships start at one’s birth. The dialectical connection between language and culture has always been a concern of L2 teachers and educators. Whether culture of the target language is to be incorporated into L2 teaching has been a subject of rapid change throughout language teaching history. In the course of time, the pendulum of ELT practitioners’ opinion has swung against or for teaching culture in context of language teaching. For example, during the first decades of the 20th century researchers discussed the importance and possibilities of including cultural components into L2 curriculum (Sysoyev & Donelson, 2002); the advent of Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) in the late 70s marks a critical shift for teaching culture, for the paradigm shift from an approach based largely on form and structure to a plurality of approaches causing an unintended side effect: the negligence of culture (Pulverness, 2003). Acquiring a new language means a lot more than the manipulation of syntax and lexicon. According to Bada (2000: 101), “the need for cultural literacy in ELT arises mainly from the fact that most language learners, not exposed to cultural elements of the society in question, seem to encounter significant hardship in communicating meaning to native speakers.” In the literature, there are two widely spread and opposing views regarding the relationship between culture and English language teaching (ELT). One is that, since culture and language are inseparable, English cannot be taught without the culture...
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