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Human trafficking: Commercial sexual exploitation and forced domestic labour in African literature

Abstract

Just like social occurrences such as human sacrifice and slavery enhanced retardation of progress in Africa in the past, trafficking is another social occurrence addressed in contemporary African literature that impedes progress and tarnishes the image of the victims. Human trafficking is rampant in Africans and some part of the world in this 21st century. This paper examines how Akachi Adimora-Ezeigbo’s Trafficked (2008) and Chika Unigwe’s On Black Sisters′ Street (2009) highlight social occurrences and how they contribute to the spread of girl trafficking in Africa. It also explores how both men and women are partners in trafficking, forming trafficking networks that lure girls from Nigeria to Europe and make huge profits from their misery. These pimps use ‘juju magic’ and rituals as a threat to exert complete control over the girls and also to ensure their compliance. The trafficked girls share their life experiences by telling their tales of woes exposing the shame that accompanies the sex trade and the stigmatization they suffer in the society. Their experiences are presented by the authors to highlight the trafficked girls′ pains, misery and struggle for freedom in order to appeal to everybody in the society to fight against human trafficking. The paper also examines how these exploited and depressed trafficked girls that have lost their self-esteem can still live fulfilled lives if government agencies and nongovernmental organizations come to their rescue.

Open access
Metadiscourse in persuasive essays by elementary students in South Korea and the US

Abstract

This study investigated metadiscourse in the persuasive essays of fourth graders from both urban and rural communities: 224 students in South Korea and 188 in the US. Each student was asked to write a persuasive essay in his or her native Korean or English in response to a story not previously read or discussed. Analysis with a taxonomy developed by Hyland (2004) indicated significant differences in the metadiscourse by country. In terms of interactive metadiscourse, South Korean students used more sentence-level transitions than U.S. students, who used more frame markers and endophoric markers. With regard to interactional metadiscourse, U.S. students used more hedges, boosters, engagement markers, and self-mentions in their essays. This study also compared the students′ essays by the type of community in which the writers lived. In the US the essays of students in rural communities contained more hedges, whereas those of students in urban areas included significantly more self-mentions. In South Korea, no significant difference was detected in the metadiscourse of students living in rural and urban areas.

Open access
National identity and language: students′ usage of English terminology within the Croatian language

Abstract

This article explores the issue of whether the strength of a country’s national identity can determine extensive use of English instead of Croatian equivalents among Croatian students of kinesiology, both in their professional (i.e. expressions related to sport) and everyday language usage. The study addresses the following issues: a) what does having stronger national identity mean; b) is there correlation between strength of national identity and gender differences in knowledge and preferences in using Croatian equivalents over English terms; c) in which context (everyday or sports) do students use more Croatian terms than English ones? A questionnaire was given to a sample of 100 students from the Faculty of Kinesiology, University of Split, Croatia. The Spearman Rank Order Correlations were used in establishing a correlation between national identity and the usage of Croatian equivalents, while the Mann-Whitney U Test was used in testing gender differences. To conclude, the results show a negative correlation between strength of national identity and knowledge of Croatian equivalents (in 51% of cases, in sports terminology, students do not know the Croatian word, and 78% prefer using English sport terms). Furthermore, gender differences were only found on the scale regarding English grades in high school (women had better grades than men).

Open access
Sociability and its impact on successful team work in an online environment

Abstract

The aim of this study is to explore the relationships between team members and their influence on a team achievement during project work in an online environment. Thirty English language students (from an upper secondary school in Prague) worked in twelve teams on a detailed guided tour through one historical Prague district by means of an online tool wiki. The main aim of the research was to answer the questions: Does student’s sociability have an impact on team work, and if it does, to which extent? The methods of a post-questionnaire, a sociometric-rating questionnaire SORAD (Hrabal and Hrabal, 2002) and the analysis of students′ wiki contributions were used. Firstly, the paper deals with the terms sociability and sociometry, then the research is introduced and finally, the results are presented. The results show that student’s position in a class plays more important role in team cooperation and collaboration than their personal preferences or motivation.

Open access
Teaching foreign language to adults from the aspects of psychodidactic conception of education

Abstract

Psychodidactic themes focused on the educational context have recently been resolved in both theoretical and research work. These themes are connected with general didactics, educational psychology, individual subject didactics, linguistics, philosophy, anthropology and neurosciences. Since the psychodidactic context of education is a widespectral and interdisciplinary topic, the present contribution deals with the issues of psychological aspects in the context of foreign language learning of adults. Good lecturers are looking for ways to help participants develop key competences. The support of lecturers has a chance to be successful especially when it is systematic and includes high-quality theoretical preparation. The aim of this paper is to attract attention, to a theoretical level, to using psychodidactic aspects during foreign language training of adults as well as to the building of competences necessary for the self- realisation of training course participants.

Open access
Technological preferences for teaching-learning a second language in Huichol communities and private high-schools in Mexico

Abstract

This research enquires about the Information and Communication Technologies preferences of students, teachers, and school principals in the teaching-learning process of a second language in 9th grade in two settings: Spanish for the Huichol people in a remote rural area and English for a private school in the city. The first case is situated in a rural Huichol community in the high mountain area of Jalisco, Mexico. The second one is located in a wealthy neighborhood in the Western Metropolitan area of Mexico City. A qualitative methodology with a heuristic and ethnographic design to investigate the reality of the daily use of technologies in both contexts for learning a second language. The instruments were the participant observation and in-depth interviews. Among the key findings are: (a) the participants tend to favor the use of technology for second language learning, (b) the bandwidth and the speed of the Internet is crucial to strengthen the immersion into the culture of a second language, (c) Educational communities support electronic enquiring, (d) there are similarities in the preferred search engines between the two populations, (e) the equity of education is hindered by school desertions, and (f) educational innovation requires that similar investigations take place to foster a full performance in the society of knowledge.

Open access
Vincent Šikula: a story and fairy-tale narrator

Abstract

Vincent Šikula entered (also) children’s literature in the 1960s, i.e. during the years when crucial works of Slovak children’s literature were published. His works are interesting for children even nowadays because they are built on story-telling, interesting language, and, very often, quick action. Šikula’s poetics is based on not underestimating children. He did not determine in advance for whom his books are intended, since, in his opinion, they were appropriated by those whom they suited most. The paper discusses Šikula’s stories and fairy-tales with regard to the authorial narrative strategies.

Open access
‘We don’t talk Gypsy here’: Minority language policies in Europe

Abstract

The Roma constitute an ideal case of educational injustice meeting linguistic difference, racism, social marginalization, and poverty. This paper asks whether human-rights or capabilities approaches are best suited to address issues related to the language education of Roma students in Europe. These children are disadvantaged by not growing up with the standard dialect of whatever language is preferred by the mainstream population, and by the low status of the Romani language, and non-standard dialect of the standard language they usually speak. We examine language education for Roma students in Croatia, the Czech Republic, and Bulgaria, describing similarities and differences across contexts. We explain weak and strong version of language rights arguments, and the ways these principles are expressed, and not expressed in education policies. Sen’s capabilities approach can be employed to generate contextualized visions of education reform that speak directly to disadvantages suffered by Roma children.

Open access
The Connachta of Táin Bó Cúailnge

Abstract

Advance in archaeology in the latter half of the 20th century rekindled interest in Táin Bó Cúailnge as a historical source and put the question of real-life identities of its main protagonists back on agenda. Despite the existing orthodoxy that the saga reflects fifth-century warfare between the southern Uí Néill and the Ulaid, some researchers continue questioning the role of the southern Uí Néill as well as the dates assigned to the events of the tale. In this article it is argued that the Connachta of the saga were more likely to be the northern Uí Néill. Furthermore, genealogical link between the two branches of the Uí Néill is put in doubt. Finally, it is suggested that the events of the Táin took place almost 200 years later than commonly believed.

Open access
Language Learners or New Speakers: The Transfer of the Breton Diwan Immersion Education Model to the Lower Sorbian Witaj Project

Abstract

The paper discusses several aspects of immersion and bilingual education systems in Brittany, France and in Lower Lusatia, Germany. Their role in the process of becoming a new speaker of a minority language is exemplified by the Diwan immersion education model in Brittany and the Witaj project in Lower Lusatia concerning the Sorbian people. Taking into consideration the different sociolinguistic situation of both groups, the level and reasons for language shift, the existing language policy in France and in Germany, both educational models are presented. I analyze some factors that influence the possible success or failure of these two models, such as: the linguistic environments, teaching systems, the roles of teachers, the minority language attitudes of pupils, their language practices, the availability of extracurricular activities in the minority language, and the existence of different types of communities of practice. All these factors influence pupils’ language choices and practices. Not all language learners will use a minority language in the future, since it depends on the conscious decision of each person. The distinction between language learners and minority language new speakers can thus be justified.

Open access