The present article discusses the popularity of English since World War II, which has turned to a decisive lingua franca in Europe over the past decades and has been a major component of the thriving language industry. Our hypothesis is that when it comes to teaching foreign languages, most notably English, the inclusion of translation is rather limited (at least in Eastern Europe), and translation is even “stigmatized and excluded” from instruction (cf. Venuti 2013). However, multimedia products from the USA, most notably Hollywood movies, are highly popular among teenagers – thus, we argue for the benefits of watching (together with their scripts and subtitles) and using them as “natural” sources of language which may be used to counterbalance the textbooks and grammar books originating from the UK. We exemplify specific grammar- and vocabulary-related border crossings of institutionalized language teaching (e.g. Subject–Verb disagreement or double negative) from Band of Brothers, a highly popular TV mini-series. We also highlight the importance of the target language and individual norms when translating or subtitling taboo words. The conclusion section mentions the effectiveness of translations through subtitles, knowing that the effort is diminished when learning and entertainment is combined (cf. Caimi 2006) in the hope of serving the real needs of the learners.
The main aim of an argumentative speech act complex, as defined in argumentation theory, is to resolve a difference of opinion by advancing a constellation of reasons brought up by the arguer in order to justify the acceptability of a standpoint. In order to achieve one’s goal, the arguer is entitled to employ strategic maneuvering, a process through which a balance between reasonableness and effectiveness is to be established, and the aim of which is to move towards the best position in the actual context of argumentation. A prototypical example of applying strategic maneuvering is that of political speeches where speakers frequently achieve their goals by the rhetorical means of persuasion and manipulation, by misleading language use. The speaker’s orientation towards finding the best position will be followed through the analysis of dialogues taken from the TV series House of Cards.
Both in the theoretical framework of applied linguistics and empirical studies, second language acquisition is either examined within the universalist postulation of an innate language acquisition device or it is discussed in a pluralist manner featuring the great variety of language-specific influences. The present paper focuses on the latter issue, aiming to review some of the recent studies on the role of the mother tongue in second language speech perception and production. Our main interest is in phonetic learning. Thus, we shall particularly turn our attention to certain theoretical–empirical data regarding second language speech perception and production, such as the perceptual assimilation model, the native language magnet theory, and the articulatory setting theory.
This paper seeks to cross the boundaries of what we consider linguistic landscape (LL) and open new spaces, thus examining the Internet as a complex set of linguistic landscapes. The present study is the result of an exploratory research. Virtual linguistic landscape (VLL) provides opportunities for language display that are rare in the geographical LL. This study investigates multilingualism and language practices present on the periphery of cyberscapes analysed in this research (namely the social media), based on questionnaires carried out among bilingual university students at Sapientia University. The conclusion will offer suggestions for further research on how to extend the boundaries of LL studies to the digital domain.
The idea that in foreign language classes the use of L1 can be beneficial for students is gaining ground in foreign language teaching methodology. Translanguaging is a relatively newly coined term that is often used to refer both to the process of switching between two languages and the methodology that lies behind it. After presenting the main characteristics of translanguaging and the possibility of implementing it as a pedagogical method in English language classrooms, the paper presents a translanguaging activity and also shows how the students evaluated their participation in this practice. The paper concludes that in order to employ translanguaging practices in the classroom, it is necessary to adopt a new mindset to teaching that allows for multiple language use in class and also encourages language learners to embrace their entire linguistic potential.
“The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence/hill” is an old English proverb which shows that people tend to appreciate more what others have, just by crossing (with their eyes) the border represented by the fence/hill. Though the afore-mentioned proverb is a strong piece of advice against comparing what we possess with what others have, the aim of my paper is exactly that: to compare proverbs belonging to the Romanian culture to those of the Korean one, not for the sake of highlighting the wisdom or beauty of the Romanian over the Korean proverbs or vice versa but rather for identifying similarities and differences in terms of structure, vocabulary, and, above all, meaning, being aware that proverbs are elements of language that best reflect a culture’s beliefs and values. To this aim, 50 Romanian proverbs selected from two memorable Romanian sources (Iordache Golescu’s Proverbe comentate ‘Commented Proverbs’ and Anton Pann’s Proverbele românilor ‘The Romanians’ Proverbs’) will be compared with their Korean counterparts.
Translators and language teachers are cultural and intercultural mediators, facilitators of intercultural transfers and border crossings between cultures. The abilities to understand, interpret, and produce written texts appropriately play an essential role in these professions. In the process of translation, source-language texts have to be understood and translated using the most appropriate target-language equivalents. Reading skills and awareness of reading strategies are equally essential for language teachers, who are expected to guide language learners in developing these skills. In this study, we intend to examine the reading habits and reading strategies used by a group of Hungarian translator and teacher trainees when dealing with texts written in English. Their reading comprehension performance will be assessed with a test and compared with their ability to translate English texts into Hungarian. Based on the literature and our personal experience in language teaching, teacher training, and translator training, we assume that students preparing for the above mentioned professions have a well-developed reading strategy awareness and that their reading comprehension skills in English strongly influence the ability to translate texts into their native language.
One of the major functions newspapers have is that of (re)presenting reality for their readers and thus explain events and promote specific values; newspapers are multimodal texts, which resort both to language and images to convey their message. The paper analyses a British and a North American newspaper article and has two aims. Firstly, to investigate the strategies used by journalists to represent immigrants in a positive way and, secondly, to draw a comparative analysis between the articles in terms of these strategies. The theoretical part defines the concept of racism and the ways in which it is nowadays expressed and lists some of the strategies that are frequently used to present immigrants (such as topic, referential strategies, intensifying, extensivization, victimization, personalization, voices heard, argumentation, etc.) with the use of pictures. The second part identifies strategies used in these two articles. The conclusions present a comparison between them in terms of similarities (values upheld, type of argumentation) and differences (intensification and nomination strategies, quotation patterns).
Teaching English as a foreign language at an early (7–12) and even at a very early (under 7) age is becoming more and more popular and accessible, mainly due to the pressure from parents. Parents are essential stakeholders in the TEFL of these ages, and thus it is beneficial for the future of TEFL to do research into parental attitudes in order to be able to assure that expectations and outcomes meet. Our study examines parental attitudes towards the teacher and the ideal age to start learning a foreign language. Fifty Hungarian parents of children aged 0–7 completed our online questionnaire, which mapped the demographics and linguistic profiles of respondents and their views and attitudes related to language learning. Furthermore, attitudes towards teachers’ pronunciation (American, British, or Hungarian) were measured on a 5-point Likert-scale. The 8-item attitude scale showed good reliability (N = 50, Cronbach α = 0.772, p < 0.001). Parents generally placed high emphasis on native-like pronunciation. However, accent-related attitudes varied among parents preferring different ages to start FL learning. Parents favouring an early start preferred native-speaking teachers, with no preference for a British or American accent.