The role of celebrity in attitudes to the English of native and non-native speakers. A case study of female Italian ELF users
The nativeness principle is a major factor in attitudes to the use of ELF (see: Seidlhofer 2001, 2011; Jenkins 2007). Aside from issues of identity and the maintenance of an increasingly unjustifiable disparity in status between NES and NNES users of English, the emulation required by the nativeness principle is difficult to justify in the face of the fact that no single NS model of English exists (Seidlhofer 2011) and that research shows that NNES users are, in any case, unreliable at identifying NESs (Christiansen 2014), thus casting doubt over whether such models are as important in practice as conventional wisdom maintains. In this paper, we report on an experiment broadly following the matched-guise test technique (Lambert et al. 1960). In this, we collected NNES ELF users’ reactions, in the form of a Likert Scale, to recordings of various speakers, some of whom NES from the inner circle, others highly proficient ELF users from the outer circle (see Graddol 2010). Respondents were presented the same set of six speakers under different randomised guises according to the two parameters of ±NES (Native English Speaker) and ±Celeb (Celebrity), the latter chosen as a feature particularly relevant in the context of models and the motivation for emulation. Respondents, female Italian ELF users, were asked to rate how happy they would be to speak like the persona (whether genuine or invented) in question. The object was to see whether any discernable pattern could be identified in the way that the features of ±NES and ±Celeb interact to affect attitudes to different manifestations of English, and whether a “celebrity effect”, in particular in respect to NNES, can be shown to exist as a possible rival to the nativeness principle. In discussion of our results, we identify a possible third parameter namely affinity between respondent and speaker.
Brons, L. 2015, Othering, an Analysis, in “Transcience”, vol. 6, Issue 1, pp. 69-90.
Cheshire, J., Nortier, J. and Adger, D. 2015, Emerging Multiethnolects in Europe (PDF. Queen Mary Occasional Papers in Linguistics: 4)
Christiansen, T. 2011, L1 Pronunciation and Intelligibility in ELF: A Case Study, in “Lingue e Linguaggi” 6, pp. 21-38.
Christiansen, T. 2014, Putting the accent on intelligibility: What constitutes ‘good’ pronunciation in the context of English as a lingua franca? A case study of learners of different L1s, in “Textus”, XXVII n. 1 –2014 (Language Issue), Perspectives on English as a Lingua Franca, Guido, M.G. and Seidlhofer, B. (Eds.), pp.35-51.
Christiansen, T. 2016a, The localisation of ELF. Code mixing and switching between ELF and Italian in Italian internet accommodation forums for international students, in Tsantila N., Mandalios J., Melpomeni I. (eds), ELF: Pedagogical and Interdisciplinary Perspectives, DEREE – The American College of Greece, Athens, pp. 60-69.
Christiansen, T. 2016b, Translanguaging within English as a (Multi) Lingua Franca. Implications for business enterprises in a globalised economy, in “Lingue e Linguaggi”, 17. pp. 39-55.
Christiansen, T. 2017, ELF-oriented attitudes to learning English, in Lingue e Linguaggi 21, pp. 57-77.
Christiansen, T. 2018. Are native speakers the only model for ELF users?, in “Lingue e Linguaggi” 26, pp. 101-120.
Cook, V. 1999, Going beyond the Native Speaker in Language Teaching, in TESOL Quarterly, 33, 2, pp. 185-209.
Coulmas, F. (ed). 1981, A Festschrift for native speaker, Mouton, The Hague.
Firth, A. 1996, The discursive accomplishment of normality. On ‘lingua franca’ English and conversation analysis, in “Journal of Pragmatics” 26, pp. 237–59.
García O. / Li, W. 2014, Translanguaging: Language, Bilingualism and Education, Palgrave Macmillan, Houndmills, Basingstoke.
Giles, H. 1970, Evaluative Reactions To Accents, in “Educational Review”, 22.3, pp. 211-227.
Graddol, D. 2010, English Next, The British Council, London.
Jenkins, J. 1998, Which pronunciation norms and models for English as an International Language?, in “ELT Journal”, 52/2, pp.119-126.
Jenkins, J. 2000, The Phonology of English as an International Language, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Jenkins, J. 2007, English as a Lingua Franca: Attitude and Identity, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Jones, T. 2001, Shades of Brown: The Law of Skin Color, in “Duke Law Journal”, 49, pp 1487-1557.
Kachru, B.B. 1985, Standards, codification and sociolinguistic realism: the English language in the outer circle, in Quirk, R. / Widdowson, H.G. (Eds.), English in the World: Teaching and Learning the Language and Literatures, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 11-30.
Kachru, B.B. 1998, English as an Asian Language, in “Links & Letters” 5, pp. 89-108.
Lambert, W.E., Hodgson, R.C., Gardner, R.C. and Fillenbaum S. 1960, Evaluational Reactions to Spoken Languages, in “Journal of Abnormal and Social Psychology”, 20.1 (1960), pp. 44-51.
Levis, J.M. 2005, Changing contexts and shifting paradigms in pronunciation teaching, in “TESOL Quarterly”, 39, pp. 369-377.
Over, H. and Carpenter, M. 2012, Putting the social into social learning: explaining both selectivity and fidelity in children’s copying behaviour, in “The Journal of Comparative Psychology”, 126, pp. 182–192.
Pennycook, A. 2007, Global Englishes and Transcultural Flows, Routledge, London.
Quirk, R. 1985, The English language in a global context, in Quirk, R. and Widdowson, H.G. (Eds.), English in the World: Teaching and Learning the Language and Literatures, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, pp. 1-6.
Rosewarne, D. 1994, Estuary English: tomorrow’s RP?, in “English Today” 37 v 10 (1), January 1994, pp 3-9.
Rubin, D.L. 1992, Non language factors affecting undergraduates' judgments of nonnative English-speaking teaching assistants, in “Research in Higher Education”, 33, pp. 511–531.
Seidlhofer, B. 2001, Closing a conceptual gap: the case for a description of English as a lingua franca, in Davies, A. and Elder, C. (eds.) The handbook of applied linguistics, Blackwell, Oxford, pp. 431-450.
Seidlhofer, B. 2003, Controversies in applied linguistics, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Seidlhofer, B. 2005, Key concepts in ELT: English as a lingua franca, in “ELT Journal”, pp 339-341.
Seidlhofer, B. 2011, Understanding English as a Lingua Franca: A complete introduction to the theoretical nature and practical implications of English used as a lingua franca, Oxford University Press, Oxford..
Tomasello, M. 1996, Do apes ape?, in Heyes, C. M. and Galef, B. G., Jr. (eds), Social learning in animals: The roots of culture, Academic Press, Inc, San Diego (CA), pp. 319-346.
Trudgill, P. 1980, The Social Differentiation of English in Norwich, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
Trudgill, P. and Hannah, J. 2002, International English: A Guide to the Varieties of Standard English, 4th ed., Arnold, London.
Widdowson, H.G. 1978, Teaching Language as Communication, Oxford University Press, Oxford.
Widdowson, H.G. 2015, ELF and the pragmatics of language variation, in “Journal of English as a Lingua Franca”, 4(2), pp 359–372.
Full Text: pdf
- There are currently no refbacks.