Orality and Metaphor's Effects on Teaching Culture

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Orality and Metaphor's Effects on Teaching Culture by Mind Map: Orality and Metaphor's Effects on Teaching Culture

1. The Problem

1.1. How Culture is Important in the Foreign Language Classroom

1.2. How Culture is Normally Taught in the Foreign Language Classroom

2. Propositional Knowledge

2.1. Essentially, facts.

2.2. Achievement and Revealed Culture is propositional knowledge

3. Many educators make distinction between pedagogical content and process. This means that they can retain a conception of knowledge as essentially a thing, even when using different approaches.

4. Evidence

4.1. Book where author advocates a communicative approach, but the emphasis of her book is on the best way to teach language elements, devoting chapters each to pronunciation, characters, sentences, discourse, and culture. In other words, she starts from the bottom and goes up, reflecting (in my opinion) a view of language as something that is constructed from smaller elements to make up larger units of meaning.

4.2. Specifically, she divides culture into elements based on its relative concreteness / abstractness and how common it is and comes up with three methods (key word, key sentence, key genre) that are, in and of themselves firmly language / form based, for its teaching. [She's dividing up culture - based on the Acquisition metaphor.]This conception of culture seems to be different than what is advocated in the Performed Culture Approach, where culture is seen as the broad frame of reference from which all language acts (as well as non-linguistic acts) get their meaning and is seen as much more important than what this author seems to think.

4.3. Reading Notes Author thinks lower level students should be taught concrete cultural elements and advanced learners abstract elements ********************************************* only concrete facts should be taught. For instance, what do Chinese people do at the major festivals? What are the major differences between the Han ethnic group and other Chinese ethnic groups? What constitutes the Chinese family? How do Chinese people show respect for and get along with one another? What is the structure of the Chinese educational system? When and why did the Cultural Revolution take place? What are the names and characteristics of the major Chinese cuisines? These are all factual issues that will be relatively easy for students to talk about and comprehend. For intermediate-high students, however, simple abstract concepts should be introduced, such as, the reasons for celebrating different festivals, relationship between family members, friends, and co-workers, a general understanding of Chinese traditional thoughts, etc. These topics can be associated with simple abstract concepts that students can easily relate to their own lives and compare, with their own culture ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page:

4.4. Reading Notes Author says that the assessment of culture is no different than the assessment of language competence but no specifics ********************************************* Suppose that the objectives for Chinese language students at the elementary, intermediate, and advanced level include, but are not limited to, the understanding and practicing of the cultural elements in communication listed in Section 8.3. Teachers of these three levels may use the list as a basis for both oral and written tests to evaluate students' understanding, speaking, reading, and writing competence of those cultural concepts. This kind of assessment of cultural competence is pedagogically no different from the assessment of language competence. Yet, we have not seen it become a common practice in Chinese language classes. Perhaps, language teachers are waiting for guidance from professional organizations, such as the ACTFL. In the field of teaching Chinese as FL, we all know that there is a general lack of research on the role of culture in the acquisition of the Chinese language and I hope that the recommendations given in this chapter shed some light on the understanding of the place of culture in Chinese language teaching and learning. ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006.

4.5. Reading Notes Culture and Language Relationship ********************************************* Kramsch (1993: 8) points out "If language is seen as social practice, culture becomes the very core of language teaching. Cultural awareness must then be viewed both as enabling language proficiency and as being the outcome of reflection on language proficiency." Byram and Fleming (1998: 1-2) suggest that when language teaching begins to take seriously the concept of learning a language as the means of communication and interaction with people of another society and culture, it turns to ethnography to provide a description of context in which the language is used. Assuming that all language teachers consider teaching a language as a means of communication, the question facing them is how they balance culture and language components in the foreign language classroom. Is language proficiency or cultural proficiency the goal of teaching and learning or both7 If one or both is the goal, how should teachers integrate them into teaching and learning7 ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006.

4.6. Reading Notes Author recommends using key sentence method to teach culture at intermediate level ********************************************* Now let us turn to the method of teaching and learning cultural elements at the intermediate level. Inspired by the key word approach suggested by Wierzbicka (1997) and Myers (2000), I propose a key sentence approach for intermediate Chinese students to learn cultural concepts and improve language proficiency. This approach states that key sentences, distinctive grammatical structures in Chinese as those discussed in Chapter 6, be used to express cultural characteristics of Chinese tradition, attitude, ritual, belief and behavior. Since Chinese is a typologically different language from Indo-European and other world languages (Greenberg 1966, Li and Thompson 1975, Shi 2000), Chinese is, thus, likely to use a different sentence structure to express an idea or a thought in comparison to other languages. Furthermore, since the sentence is the minimum unit for expressing a complete idea, using key sentences is a natural vehicle to express Chinese ideas and thoughts. Using the topic-comment structure as an example, intermediate level students may use this structure to describe or comment on a Chinese festival or even to engage in a debate about it ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006.

4.7. Reading Notes Author thinks lower level students should be taught concrete cultural elements and advanced learners abstract elements ********************************************* only concrete facts should be taught. For instance, what do Chinese people do at the major festivals? What are the major differences between the Han ethnic group and other Chinese ethnic groups? What constitutes the Chinese family? How do Chinese people show respect for and get along with one another? What is the structure of the Chinese educational system? When and why did the Cultural Revolution take place? What are the names and characteristics of the major Chinese cuisines? These are all factual issues that will be relatively easy for students to talk about and comprehend. For intermediate-high students, however, simple abstract concepts should be introduced, such as, the reasons for celebrating different festivals, relationship between family members, friends, and co-workers, a general understanding of Chinese traditional thoughts, etc. These topics can be associated with simple abstract concepts that students can easily relate to their own lives and compare, with their own culture ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page:

4.8. this list represents some cultural elements of concrete, specific, and common characteristics that are attainable for students of elementary Chinese. For instance, in the process of acquiring Chinese names, students may learn the structure of Chinese names, major family names, significance of different names, implications of particular names during different social-political periods, variations among people of different social and economic backgrounds (e.g. names convey meanings of prosperity, polities, history, geographic location, belief, generation etc.) Similarly, by learning the formation of Chinese characters, students also learn the principles behind the creation and development of Chinese characters, which evidently enhances the learning of Chinese characters. ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page:

4.9. Reading Notes The author suggests something called "the key word method" to teach culture at the elementary level ********************************************* Myers (2000) recommends an integrated approach explaining key words as polysemes: words with several different but related meanings (see definitions and explanations of the polyseme by Lakoff 1987, Cheng and Tian 1989, Traugott and Dash 2002). With explanations of distinctive Chinese polysemes, non-native speakers of Chinese gain an enhanced appreciation of Chinese culture (Meyer 2000: 7). The key word method is valid and in fact has already been used by some Chinese teachers, although the current teaching materials do not seem to show that it has become a mainstream method for teaching culture, as pointed out by Myers (2000: 21). Since the key word method is for learning culture through words/characters, it seems most appropriate to use it primarily for students of elementary Chinese. (Of course, this does not mean that students of higher levels cannot also benefit from this method; rather that students with higher proficiency may benefit more from other methods to be introduced in Sections 8.3.2 to 8.3.3.) In addition to the key word method, cultural learning, I suspect, should focus on understanding at the elementary level. With various polysemes for a concept such as greeting, students may not only learn how to say "hello ~~ nr h6o ! "' but also understand that -~ zfso, -~-.~-y- zdochdn h,~o, ~-Y- n~ h~o, ~,~/f~- ze'nme ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page:

4.10. Before discussing the content of different types of curricula, it should be noted that there have been a number of questions relevant to cumculum design repeatedly debated over the last century regarding the course of teaching Chinese as FL. First, there is the procedure of acquiring the four skills (i.e. listening, speaking, reading, and writing). As indicated above, three essential elements m Chinese language curriculum design are: (I) to choose a Romanization system, (2) to decide upon a version of characters and (3) to select a procedure in the acquisition of sounds and characters. It appears that these decisions have become easier to make in the twenty-first century than ever before. In the following three sections, [ will discuss different types of curricula used by the majority of Chinese learners around the world. Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Pg. 30-32

4.11. Before discussing the content of different types of curricula, it should be noted that there have been a number of questions relevant to cumculum design repeatedly debated over the last century regarding the course of teaching Chinese as FL. First, there is the procedure of acquiring the four skills (i.e. listening, speaking, reading, and writing).

4.12. Reading Notes The Relationship between Culture and Language ********************************************* 8.2.1 Culture and language The direct relationship between cultural awareness and language proficiency stated above mirrors the close tie between culture and language. If culture and language are "inseparable and constitute a single universe or domain of experience" as claimed by Kramsch (1991: 217), then neither culture nor language can stand on its own in the research of language pedagogy. In other words, one cannot discuss a language without talking about its interaction with culture, nor can one study the development of culture without the assistance of language. Other scholars have made similar observations, however, from different angles: Language is becoming increasingly valuable as a guide to the scientific study of a given culture. In a sense, the network of cultural patterns of a civilization is indexed in the language which expresses that civilization. (Sapir 1949: 68) In second language classrooms, language and culture are inextricably intertwined. Culture is negotiated in large part through language, and language codifies many cultural assumptions and values." (Brody 2003: 40) Language organizes and expresses a whole range of cultural information and interpretations of concepts and ways of life that have acquired their specific form as part of the development of the specific community of language users. (Bryam 1989: 147) L~t, a Chinese pedagogy specialist, suggests a similar relationship between culture and language, except that he adds "Language is the foundation of culture [i~';[i~ ~(.~JCfb'2~]iltt y~ydn shi wd.nhu3 de ffch~]'" (L~ 1999:20-21), a position on which I disagree with him. I believe that the relationship is the reverse, that is, culture is the foundation of the development of a language. Without this foundation, we may not or need not have a language. Thomas (1983, 1984) also discusses the relationship between language and culture, although he emphasizes the inappropriateness of language usages derived from lack of cultural awareness: Normative speakers are often perceived to display inappropriate language behaviors and often are not even aware that they do. Inappropriateness in interactions between native and nonnative speakers often leads to socio-pragmatic failure, breakdown in communication, and the stereotyping of nonnative speakers. Thomas appears to believe that appropriateness is the key in associating language with culture. That is, if one can communicate using appropriate language, this person then has the appropriate cultural knowledge. Without the appropriate cuRural knowledge, the purpose of communication cannot be fulfilled. Evidence supporting this point of view can be found in all languages and cultures, Chinese language and culture being no exception. Take politeness, for example. There are many different ways of expressing politeness in Chinese, some of which are listed below: Using honorific forms to address elders (e.g. ,~ nin); Letting other people enjoy/do things first (e.g. eat, speak, etc.), Avoiding showing off or flattering oneself, Showing respect to elders, Showing modesty when praised Whether the above listed behaviors are expressed verbally or through body language, their correct deployment should enable speakers to achieve their communicative goals in normal social interaction with Chinese people. Lack of awareness of or disregard for these so-called proper behaviors can lead to failure of communication. This makes us believe that a language class in which communicative skills are taught cannot be totally successful without also incorporating key cultural components. ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page: My comments: Best quote from here: "Thomas (1983, 1984) also discusses the relationship between language and culture, although he emphasizes the inappropriateness of language usages derived from lack of cultural awareness: Normative speakers are often perceived to display inappropriate language behaviors and often are not even aware that they do. Inappropriateness in interactions between native and nonnative speakers often leads to socio-pragmatic failure, breakdown in communication, and the stereotyping of nonnative speakers."

4.13. Reading Notes Author proposes "key genre method" for teaching Advanced students culture ********************************************* Advanced Level After students complete two years of Chinese language training, they should be able to handle successfully most uncomplicated communicative tasks and social situations and to sustain understanding over longer stretches of connected discourse on a number of topics pertaining to different times and places (ACTFL Chinese Proficiency Guidelines 1990). At this level of language proficiency, students are prepared to explore Chinese culture in a more m-depth way. I propose that advanced level students of Chinese language Icam a wide range of cultural elements through abstract concepts. Without doubt, this stage of learning is challenging, but at the same time, it can be interesting and stimulating because abstract concepts convey ideas or thoughts that cannot bc seen; they can only bc understood or felt in many cases. To students, it is a joy and a milestone to be able to understand and communicate about something that is not visible. Following is a list of cultural elements that are full of abstract concepts: Family value Morality Ethnicity Chinese Ideology (e.g. Chinese philosophy) Food and health Life and longevity Protocol Education Influential historical events and figures Childbirth Women's issues Social issues Religion Aesthetics (e.g. elegance, beauty ) Art (e.g. painting, literature) Current affairs (e.g. politics, economy) Experienced teachers may add more elements to this list. The more challenging task for language teachers, however, is to develop a suitable method so that those abstract cultural concepts can be integrated into the language classroom. Our experience in teaching and creating textbooks for advanced learners indicates that cultural concepts at the advanced level have to be tied up with genre of discourse, that is, the style of discourse (see Swales 1990 for detailed discussion of English genre analysis in academic and research settings). Whether the communicative task is a narrative story, a letter, an advertisement, an expository essay on social problems, a dialogue between business partners, or a healthy debate on religious issues, the genre of discourse has to be explained and leamed in the language classroom. For this reason, I suggest a key genre method for teaching and learning cultural elements at the advanced level of language proficiency. This method advocates teaching and learning cultural elements through various genres of discourse. Earlier studies indicate the following relationship between written discourse and culture: The structure of written discourse and rhetorical paradigms is based on cultural frameworks, derived from different stylistic, religion, ethical, and social notions, all of which comprise written discourse conventions. Rhetorical constructs are often determined by the conceptualizations of the purpose of writing, the text's audience, and notions of what represents good writing. All these are bound up with the culture of the writer and the audience for which a text is created, ffrIinkel 1999: 71) If written discourse has such a close relationship with culture, it would be difficult to say that oral discourse has a different or lesser tie with culture. I argue that oral discourse may reflect more of a speaker's style, beliefs, morality, and understanding of society than written discourse because oral discourse takes place in a given place and time often with the assistance of body language and other situational cues that do not normally accompany written discourse. If this is true, then both written and oral discourse pattems are important for students to know in order to acquire cultural knowledge. In the following, let us examine three commonly used discourse genres and their integration with cultural content. ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page:

4.14. Reading Notes Author says culturual element to be taught can be ranked based on its uniqueness and importance ********************************************* Culture, especially Chinese culture, is very much a complex and multifaceted subject for scholars, educators and students alike to study, teach, and learn. Chinese culture embodies over five thousand years of recorded history and more than fifty ethnic groups, with their own traditions, beliefs, and social norms. With this dimension of culture, it is impossible for language teachers to include everything in the language curriculum. This challenges pedagogy specialists to investigate and determine the content ~ and amount ~ of Chinese culture that can or should be included in language classrooms. In recent years, some Chmese educators (e.g. Zhang 1990, Lfi 1999) in Mainland China have promoted cultural communication informationI (i~~.~,T,~~ y~ydn jiJoji wdnhud in language teaching), similar to the idea of multicultural communication developed by Western researchers. According to Lfi (1999: 21), cultural communication information conveys psychological attitude, value systems, living styles, moral standards, customs, ethnicity, and interests of an ethnic group of people, which are expressed through words, sentences and the socio-pragmatic system of the Chinese language. These studies are useful for us to gain a general understanding of the content of (Chinese) culture, however, they arc not instrumental in helping teachers to identify those cultural elements necessary for language teaching and lcarnmg. To accomplish that, I propose the followmg criterion: Criterion for selection of culture content for Chinese language classes: Any traditions, attitudes, rituals, beliefs, behaviors that are unique to Chinese society and people and crucial to learning and understanding the Chinese language, the people and their behaviors may be considered as part of the Chinese culture content to be taught and learned by non-native students of the Chinese language. This criterion correlates with the one recommended in Chapter 2 for selecting grammatical elements for teaching and learning Chinese as FL discussed in Chapter 2. The focus of both criteria is on the uniqueness and importance of a given cultural or grammatical element to the learning of the Chinese language. However, unlike grammatical elements, cultural elements are more abstract and therefore more difficult to pinpoint. Take Chinese tradition as an example. If asked, a teacher has to think for a moment to name some instances that can be considered elements of Chinese tradition. In comparison, grammatical elements are relatively easy for any teacher to name. For the purpose of convenience in teaching and learning, we may break Chinese culture into five categories: tradition, attitude, ritual, belief, and social behavior. It should be noted the elements included in those five categories are not meant to be exclusive. ********************************************* Xing, Janet Zhiqun. Teaching and Learning Chinese as a Foreign Language: A Pedagogical Grammar. Hong Kong University Press, 2006. Page:

5. Culture

5.1. Learning to establish intentions in a foreign culture involves learning the culture. Hector Hammerly (1982:512-514) divides the instructional discourses on the target culture into three parts:

5.2. 1. Achievement culture: the hallmarks of a civilization.

5.3. 2. Informational culture: the kinds of information a society values.

5.4. 3. Behavioral culture: the knowledge that enables a person to navigate daily life.

5.5. As learners of a foreign language progress in their ability to function in the target culture, achievement culture and informational culture become increasingly useful knowledge. But from the early stages of a foreign language learning career, the focus is on behavioral culture, which is the knowledge that enables the learner to create sufficient comfort to encourage natives to maintain the long-term relations necessary for accumulating experience in the culture.

5.6. Presentation of behavioral culture in the instructional setting can be further categorized by the ability of an instructor of a target culture to present the knowledge to a base culture learner:

5.7. 1. Revealed culture: cultural knowledge that a native is generally eager to communicate to a non-native.

5.8. 2. Ignored culture: cultural knowledge a native is generally unaware of until the behavior of a non-native brings it to light. This is what Edward T. Hall has called “hidden or covert culture.”

5.9. 3. Suppressed culture: knowledge about a culture that a native is generally unwilling to communicate to a non-native.

5.10. While revealed culture is the main cultural content of textbooks and classroom lectures, it is the ignored, or hidden, culture that tends to occupy the attention of effective foreign language teachers. As we experience generations of novice learners generalizing behavior in the target language and culture, we are continually made aware of behaviors that reflect previously unsuspected cultural constraints. Although certain aspects of suppressed culture seem to fascinate novice learners, avoiding them can be justified on functional grounds except when they have direct bearing on the learners’ reception in the target culture.

5.11. Contemplating performable culture leads us to relate words and concepts that are as often as not confused and interchanged. Cultures are complex knowledge structures that exist in societies that, in turn, are identified with particular civilizations. Cultural performances then are isolated events of civilized behavior, that can be models of actual or ideal behavior in the target society. Such events can be as simple as a greeting or as complex as negotiating a disagreement while maintaining a relationship. To achieve the presence of a foreign culture in foreign language study requires the conscious repetition of events that conform to the expectations of the target culture.

5.12. The concept of a culture and behavior presented in this discussion is analogous to a grammar that subtends a language, the major difference being that a culture is many times greater and more complex than a grammar. My knowledge of English grammar can be identified with my ability to create utterances of more or less the right content and form at the right time without premeditation. When I want to speak, I begin an utterance with the confidence that I will be able to sequence sounds, words, and phrases without thinking about the process. In a similar way, my knowledge of American culture allows me to engage in social activities and interactions without a great deal of prior planning. Just as my knowledge of English grammar does not insure that what I say is always correct in fact or beneficial to me personally, my knowledge of American culture will not guarantee success in all my social endeavors. After all, we each too often experience failure in our own cultures. Knowledge of a culture provides the basis for participation in the social interactions and transactions that lead to success or failure. In short, it gets us into the game.

5.13. Reading Notes Most foreign language pedagogues have a little secret: You cannot learn a foreign language, you can only learn to do things in a foreign language. This is a “secret” only because it is hard to explain to someone who is intent on learning (some say “mastering”) a foreign language that he or she has to learn how to converse with members of a target language community one “event” at a time until the accumulated effect is a generalized capacity. The adventure of our Japanese housewife (age 30) suggests how we can structure these events and what features we need to emphasize when creating culture learning opportunities in foreign language pedagogy. ********************************************* Walker, Galal. “Performed Culture.” Language Policy and Pedagogy: Essays in Honor of A. Ronald Walton, 2000, 221–36.

6. Literacy's Effects

6.1. “There are no closed systems and never have been. The illusion that logic is a closed system has been encouraged by writing and even more by print. Oral cultures hardly had this kind of illusion, though they had others. They had no sense of language as ‘structure’. They did not conceive of language by analogy with a building or other object in space. Language and thought for the ancient Greeks grew out of memory. Mnemosyne, not Hephaestus, is the mother of the Muses. Architecture had nothing to do with language and thought. For ‘structuralism’ it does, by ineluctable implication.

6.1.1. I guess this could be used to show that textuality is probably one of the biggest culprits behind structural and acquisition metaphors and that before writing, both language and learning were understood with different metaphors. Maybe in order to get back to a clearer picture of language and learning, we need to understand how textuality has affected our thinking.

6.2. "For anyone who has a sense of what words are in a primary oral culture, or a culture not far removed from primary orality, it is not surprising that the Hebrew term dabar means ‘word’ and ‘event’. Malinowski (1923, pp. 45 1, 470–81) has made the point that among ‘primitive’ (oral) peoples generally language is a mode of action and not simply a countersign of thought, though he had trouble explaining what he was getting at (Sampson 1980, pp. 223– 6), since understanding of the psychodynamics of orality was virtually nonexistent in 1923. Neither is it surprising that oral peoples commonly, and probably universally, consider words to have great power."

6.2.1. More evidence that there is a way to understand language through the participation metaphor, where language becomes something that is done rather than something that is acquired

6.2.1.1. Ong, Walter J. 2013. Orality and Literacy. New York, NY: Routledge. Page: 32

6.3. "Language study in all but recent decades has focused on written texts rather than on orality for a readily assignable reason: the relationship of study itself to writing. All thought, including that in primary oral cultures, is to some degree analytic: it breaks its materials into various components. But abstractly sequential, classificatory, explanatory examination of phenomena or of stated truths is impossible without writing and reading. Human beings in primary oral cultures, those untouched by writing in any form, learn a great deal and possess and practice great wisdom, but they do not ‘study’. They learn by apprenticeship—hunting with experienced hunters, for example—by discipleship, which is a kind of apprenticeship, by listening, by repeating what they hear, by mastering proverbs and ways of combining and recombining them, by assimilating other formulary materials, by participation in a kind of corporate retrospection—not by study in the strict sense. When study in the strict sense of extended sequential analysis becomes possible with the interiorization of writing, one of the first things that literates often study is language itself and its uses."

6.3.1. * This can be used to show that with text comes analysis and the breaking down of things so that they can be classified and studied (acquired), while with societies untouched by “book learning,” learning is something completely different: it hinges on participation. * This can be used to show how or offer a possible explanation for why we view learning as “acquisition” and the alternative “participation” metaphor for learning in use.

6.3.1.1. Ong, Walter J. 2013. Orality and Literacy. New York, NY: Routledge. Page: 8-9

6.4. Reading Notes "Word" as a concept may not exist in oral cultures ————————————————— Pertinence: The basic unit of language as conceptualized by the Acquisition metaphor may be wholly dependent on a consciousness altered by literacy. In other words, its legitimacy is in question. Or at least it opens the door to imagining language in a different way. ********************************************* Quote: "‘Line’ is obviously a text-based concept, and even the concept of a ‘word’ as a discrete entity apart from a flow of speech seems somewhat text-based. Goody (1977, p. 115) has pointed out that an entirely oral language which has a term for speech in general, or for a rhythmic unit of a song, or for an utterance, or for a theme, may have no ready term for a ‘word’ as an isolated item, a ‘bit’ of speech, as in, ‘The last sentence here consists of twenty-six words’. Or does it? Maybe there are twenty-eight. If you cannot write, is ‘textbased’ one word or two? The sense of individual words as significantly discrete items is fostered by writing, which, here as elsewhere, is 60 ORALITY AND LITERACY diaeretic, separative. (Early manuscripts tend not to separate words clearly from each other, but to run them together.)" ********************************************* Ong, Walter J. 2013. Orality and Literacy. New York, NY: Routledge. Page: 59-60

6.5. Reading Notes For oral cultures, words are events ————————————————— Pertinence: Shows how writing made words into objects which can be accumulated Illustrates that writing has facilitated the acquisition metaphor Also demonstrates how since we're tied to thinking of language through the lens of writing, we're bound to the acquisition metaphor Is this a way out? To think of language as sound? ********************************************* Quote: "Without writing, words as such have no visual presence, even when the objects they represent are visual. They are sounds. You might ‘call’ them back—‘recall’ them. But there is nowhere to ‘look’ for them. They have no focus and no trace (a visual metaphor, showing dependency on writing), not even a trajectory. They are occurrences, events." ********************************************* Ong, Walter J. 2013. Orality and Literacy. New York, NY: Routledge. Page: 31

7. The Acquisition Metaphor is More Suited to Learning Certain Types of Knowledge Than Other Types

7.1. Certain knowledge, such as propositional knowledge, i.e., facts, can be learned by the process suggested by the Acquisition Metaphor

7.2. Knowledge that is highly context dependent does not lend itself well to the learning model suggested by the Acquisition Metaphor

7.3. Because the Acquisition metaphor treats knowledge as an object, the tendency it fosters in those who hold it is to construe all forms of knowledge as propositional (i.e., facts)

7.4. Thus, language (and cultural) knowledge is often understood as being propositional in nature (a shallow conception of both of these phenomenon) rather than being a temporally, spatially, and socially bounded performance

7.5. This rather thin conception of language can be surprisingly tenacious, coloring our thinking on the subject even after we know it's incomplete

8. Acquisition Metaphor and the Learning of Propositions

8.1. Propositional lens for learning (Strongly correlated with acquisition metaphor) ————————————————— Pertinence: * Use this provide support for contention that acquisition metaphor is so common that it can be dubbed “common sense view of learning” * Identifies key assumptions and attributes about learning based on this lens ********************************************* Quote: "Types of conceptual lenses for understanding learning (1) The propositional learning lens A popular and widely employed conceptual lens for understanding learning is the propositional learning lens. This lens is used to explain the learning of facts, concepts, propositions and the like. It centres on the notion of acquisition as its prime metaphor, but this is invariably accompanied by the associated metaphor of transfer. So fixed are acquisition and transfer in the popular mind that this conceptual lens can be dubbed the ‘common-sense account of learning’. This is closely related to what Beckett and Hager (2002, pp. 96–98) call the ‘standard paradigm of learning’. However, whereas their discussion centres on the broad features of learning and learning practices, our focus here is on the specific metaphors themselves and how they lead, as well as mislead, our understanding of learning. The propositional learning lens connotes still further metaphors by implying that the mind is a ‘container’ of ‘knowledge as a type of substance’ (Lakoff & Johnson, 1980). Thus, acquisition of knowledge becomes movement of entities into a container, out of which they can be transferred as required (cf. Freire [1970] on ‘banking education’): Under the influence of the mind-as-container metaphor, knowledge is treated as consisting of objects contained in individual minds, something like the contents of mental filing cabinets. (Bereiter, 2002, p. 179) This theory highlights learning as the accumulation of products. But the processes of learning by which this supposed accumulation occurs are overlooked. Exactly how acquisition and transfer are supposed to happen is not addressed. We argue that the acquisition and transfer metaphors, that characterise this conceptual lens, colour our understanding of learning with the following three basic assumptions: (a) What is learnt is a product, a thing or substance that is independent of the learner. This assumption underpins the whole web of common-sense notions about learning, such as the idea that, as well as in minds, this independent thing can be stored in other suitable receptacles (books, libraries, CDRoms etc). Also, just as many people can read the same book, so the various learners in a group can achieve identical learning, i.e. their minds can each acquire the same something that is independent of any one of them. Later we will suggest that there are important kinds of learning for which this independence assumption does not apply. (b) Learning involves movement of this thing or substance from place to place. This assumption underpins the acquisition and transfer metaphors. The metaphors encourage the common-sense notion of a commodity or substance being literally Beyond transfer of learning 623 moved from one location to another. For instance, someone learns ‘x’ at location ‘y’, then moves to location ‘z’ where they use ‘x’ (i.e. transfer it at the new location). Or, knowledge is transferred from a teacher to a learner. Here the supposed movement must be more complex, and puzzling, since the teacher also retains what was transferred to the learner. In fact, the metaphors are already misleading us. (c) What is learnt is independent of and separate from the context in which it is learnt. The decontextualised learner who acquires and transfers independent items of learning has strong roots in Western philosophical and epistemological traditions that are by now widely discredited. Yet uncritical employment of the acquisition and transfer metaphors entrenches this dual separation of both the learner, as spectator mind, and the learning from the context in which it is learnt. Later we will argue that some important types of learning are significantly and irreducibly contextual. Over- reliance on the propositional learning lens for understanding learning renders these important types of learning invisible. Of course, propositional learning covers more than just acquisition of true isolated propositions. The learner also needs to know how various propositions relate to one another, how propositions are validated etc. (e.g. see Winch, 1998, p.16). These matters are beyond the scope of this paper. However, one significant result of engaging in this further elaboration and discussion of propositional learning would be that it would identify further metaphors, such as certain concepts being dubbed as ‘central’, ‘key’, ‘basic’ or ‘fundamental’; or the ‘surface’ learning/‘deep’ learning distinction. Practices and processes within formal education systems, such as curriculum and assessment, have been strongly shaped by assumptions associated with the propositional learning lens. With formal education having been compulsory for well over a century, the public has been well and truly ‘schooled’ to accept that propositional learning is the ‘natural’ kind of learning, with acquisition and transfer being its characteristic features (Hager, 2005). The influence of the acquisition and transfer metaphors is apparent in the widespread perception that success in quiz shows is evidence of substantial learning. This popular quiz show view of learning makes a series of assumptions, each closely related to the transfer metaphor: N All questions have a correct answer. N The summit of learning achievement is the ability to answer all questions correctly. N The extent of learning can be accurately and numerically gauged (e.g. as % of correct answers). But the quiz show notion of learning is actually very limited and partial. Expertise in a discipline does not involve memorisation of prodigious amounts of factual propositional knowledge. Instead, disciplinary experts know what factual informa- tion is useful in a particular situation, where and how to access this information as required and how to use it in the given situation. Though they can readily call to mind a range of propositional knowledge relating to their discipline, their detailed 624 P. Hager and P. Hodkinson understanding of the discipline consists as much in a capacity to access and deploy a much greater range of propositional knowledge that they have no need or inclination to memorise. This latter capacity involves various kinds of know-how that may not all be codifiable as a set of true propositions. This is why experts might not always excel as expected in a quiz show situation, especially where the questions are at a level well beyond the elementary. The same kinds of considerations apply even more to expertise in more practical activities, where there is no one correct way to proceed and where much of the knowledge involves tacit dimensions. Is propositional learning important qua learning? Our answer is a qualified ‘possibly, for some specific purposes’, e.g. when calling on one’s knowledge of multiplication tables or competing in a quiz show. However, such uses of this lens should always be located within broader views of learning, which will be explored later. What is more, the widespread use of this lens unhelpfully reinforces use of the acquisition and transfer metaphors. In stark contrast to the Lave quotation that opens this paper, Sfard (1998, p. 9) has claimed that we have to retain the acquisition metaphor, in order to make sense of learning transfer. However, we question whether acquisition can explain transfer, since we think that the notion of transfer actually smuggles in acquisition with it. In any case, we maintain that both of these metaphors have been over-used to the point of mystifying learning more than explaining it. Our reasons for this claim will become clear in the following sections." ********************************************* Hager, Paul, and Phil Hodkinson. “Moving beyond the Metaphor of Transfer of Learning.” British Educational Research Journal 35, no. 4 (August 1, 2009): 619–38. doi:10.1080/01411920802642371. Page: 622-624

9. Presentation

9.1. Evidence

9.1.1. Evidence illustrates the point that culture is viewed as propositional knowledge and that is is broken down into its component parts.

9.1.2. Evidence illustrates that this propositional interpretation and analytical process occurs even when the author is aware of culture's importance. Thus, these processes are happening at an unconscious level. Its as if it's difficult for the author to conceive of culture as anything other than propositional knowledge.

9.2. Background Concepts

9.2.1. Different types of culture

9.2.2. Why learning culture is important.

9.3. Other Points to Make

9.3.1. It's not just a matter of telling someone that culture is important. Even when they agree, they can misinterpret what culture is and how it's taught.

9.3.2. Thesis Misc Notes More speculation on why acquisition metaphor is so prominent ————————————————— Just as Ong says in Orality and Literacy, Literacy changed human consciousness. It allowed us to "unload" our memory to something external to ourselves. In this sense, language did really become separated from its environment and a "thing." That, combined with the fact that literacy has so taken over our thinking (even to the point where books have to be written about rediscovering the primacy or the oral nature of langauge), and it's no wonder we have trouble thinking about language in terms other than what Acquisition provides. *********************************************

9.3.3. Freeing ourselves of a textual bias toward language is really hard ————————————————— Pertinence: "Can use this to show that another write agrees that wrenching free of the Acquisition metaphor is really difficult" ********************************************* Quote: Freeing ourselves of chirographic and typographic bias in our understanding of language is probably more difficult than any of us can imagine, far more difficult, it would seem, than the ‘deconstruction’ of literature, for this ‘deconstruction’ remains a literary activity. More will be said about this problem in treating the internalizing of technology in the next chapter. ********************************************* Ong, Walter J. 2013. Orality and Literacy. New York, NY: Routledge. Page: 75

10. Conceptual Metaphors

10.1. We're often not aware that they affect our thinking We're often not aware of in which ways that they are affecting our thinking Their effects can be pervasive, affecting our thinking in subtle ways across a wide range of domains, often in surprising ways They can affect how we understand new concepts They can create frames through which we understand reality We unconsciously try to fit new concepts into preexisting frameworks Conceptual metaphors also affect the way in which we understand the substance of objects, and these ideas can persist, even after the metaphor has been consciously rejected Educators often make the distinction between pedagogical processes and pedagogical content, i.e., language is the content and is an object, therefore, I can use different “processes,” even more holistic approaches, yet still retain my basic conception of what language is (there are examples of this within the notes) We divide the language to be acquired into “four skills” Even in Participation dominant conceptions of learning, “memories” or “experiences” are acquired I think this is one of the stories that I want to tell. I want to demonstrate just how pervasive the Acquisition metaphor's influence on our thinking is and how it pops up unexpectedly to exert an effect.

10.2. The metaphors that we hold often act at an unconscious level, exerting more influence over our thinking than any specific theory. In order to ensure teacher training is effective, we need to be aware of, and address, the underlying metaphors teachers may have. In order, also, to effect better communication between educators, we need to be aware of hidden metaphors affecting our thinking so that we don't talk at cross-purposes. One of the main consequences of viewing learning through the Acquisition lens is that knowledge is objectified. Once objectified, it's transferable and can be de-contextualized. But the truth is that there may not be such a thing as knowledge per se and that our conception of what knowledge is is fundamentally shaped by our metaphors for learning.

10.3. If it's “things,” then the acquisition metaphor continues to subtly color how you view teaching. Even if you acknowledge culture or pragmatics as something worthy of study, acquisition and “thingness” still underlies everything.

10.4. The acquisition metaphor is so strongly entrenched in our minds that we would probably never become aware of its existence if another, alternative metaphor did not start to develop. When we search through recent publications, the emergence of a new metaphor becomes immediately ap- parent. Among the harbingers of the change are such titles as "Reflection, Communication, and Learning Mathemat- ics," "Democratic Competence and Reflective Knowing," "Development Through Participation in Sociocultural Ac- tivities," "Learning in the Community," "Reflective Dis- course and Collective Reflection," "Mathematics As Being in the World," "Dialogue and Adult Learning," "Coopera- tive Learning of Mathematics," and "Fostering Communi- ties of Inquiry." The new researcher talks about learning as a legitimate peripheral participation (Lave & Wenger, 1991) or as an apprenticeship in thinking (Rogoff, 1990). A far-reaching change is signaled by the fact that al- though all of these titles and expressions refer to learning, none of them mentions either "concept" or "knowledge." The terms that imply the existence of some permanent en- tities have been replaced with the noun "knowing," which indicates action. This seemingly minor linguistic modifica- tion marks a remarkable foundational shift (cf. Cobb, 1995; Smith, 1995). The talk about states has been replaced with attention to activities. In the image of learning that emerges from this linguistic turn, the permanence of having gives way to the constant flux of doing. While the concept of ac- quisition implies that there is a clear end point to the process of learning, the new terminology leaves no room for halting signals. Moreover, the ongoing learning activities are never considered separately from the context within which they take place. The context, in its turn, is rich and multifarious, and its importance is pronounced by talk about situatedness, contextuality, cultural embeddedness, and social mediation. The set of new key words that, along with the noun "practice," prominently features the terms "discourse" and "communication" suggests that the learner should be viewed as a person interested in participation in certain kinds of activities rather than in accumulating pri- vate possessions." ********************************************* Sfard, Anna. “On Two Metaphors for Learning and the Dangers of Choosing Just One.” Educational Researcher 27, no. 2 (1998): 4–13. Page: 6

10.5. Reading Notes Support for idea that acquisition metaphor is ubiquitous in thinking about learning ————————————————— Pertinence: * Focus on structure in SLA is where the language is conceived of as having a form (sentences) that one must acquire (correctly) ********************************************* Quote: "Acquisition Metaphor Since the dawn of civilization, human learning is conceived of as an acquisition of something. Indeed, the Collins Eng- lish Dictionary defines learning as "the act of gaining knowl- edge." Since the time of Piaget and Vygotski, the growth of knowledge in the process of learning has been analyzed in terms of concept development. Concepts are to be under- stood as basic units of knowledge that can be accumulated, gradually refined, and combined to form ever richer cogni- tive structures. The picture is not much different when we talk about the learner as a person who constructs meaning. This approach, which today seems natural and self-evident, brings to mind the activity of accumulating material goods. The language of "knowledge acquisition" and "concept de- velopment" makes us think about the human mind as a container to be filled with certain materials and about the learner as becoming an owner of these materials. Once we realize the fact that it is the metaphor of acqui- sition that underlies our thinking about learning mathe- matics, we become immediately aware of its presence in almost every common utterance on learning. Let us look at a number of titles of publications that appeared over the last two decades: "The Development of Scientific Knowledge in Elementary School Children," "Acquisition of Mathemati- cal Concepts and Processes," "[Cjoncept-Mapping in Science," "Children's Construction of Number," "Stage Theory of the Development of Alternative Conceptions," "Promoting Conceptual Change in Science," "On Having and Using Geometric Knowledge," "Conceptual Difficul- ties . . . in the Acquisition of the Concept of Function." The idea that learning means acquisition and accumulation of some goods is evident in all of these titles. They may point to a gradual reception or to an acquisition by development or by construction, but all of them seem to imply gaining ownership over some kind of self-sustained entity. " ********************************************* Sfard, Anna. “On Two Metaphors for Learning and the Dangers of Choosing Just One.” Educational Researcher 27, no. 2 (1998): 4–13. Page: 5