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CARLA Presentation and Open House 2017


The Challenge of Globalization in Foreign Language Education

Keynote Speaker: Claire Kramsch is Professor Emerita of German and Education at University of California–Berkeley. Her area of research is applied linguistics, with emphasis on social, cultural and stylistic approaches to language study and she has published numerous books, articles, and chapters in these areas. She was, until 2006, founding Director of the Berkeley Language Center, a research and development unit for all foreign language teachers on campus. Among her many awards, she has received UC Berkeley's Distinguished Teaching Award, the Distinguished Service Award from the Modern Language Association, and the Distinguished Scholarship and Service Award from the American Association for Applied Linguistics.

[Keynote Abstract]
In a recent position paper on teaching foreign languages in an era of globalization, Claire Kramsch wrote: "Through its mobility of people and capital, its global technologies, and its global information networks globalization has changed the conditions under which foreign languages (FLs) are taught, learned, and used. It has destabilized the codes, norms, and conventions that are putting into question the monolingual foundation of FL education and challenging monolingual ideologies at play in our society. These changes call for a more reflective, interpretive, historically grounded and politically engaged pedagogy than was called for by the communicative language teaching of the eighties" (2014, p. 296).

In this presentation, Professor Kramsch updated this assessment of the situation by discussing recent developments in applied linguistics: the multilingual turn (May, 2014), the transdisciplinary turn (Douglas Fir Group, 2016), and various trans-perspectives (Hawkins & Mori, forthcoming) that are redefining what it means to learn and use one or several additional languages. She also discussed two current trends that are challenging the very nature of language and that raise serious ethical questions for collegiate education: the algorithms being developed by the computer industry that strive to establish full translatability across linguistic codes, and the proliferation of purely phatic uses of language in a spectacle society obsessed with social media.


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CARLA-Funded Research Initiatives

University of Minnesota Language Community Research Initiatives

This presentation is cosponsored by: Global Programs and Strategy Alliance; College of Education and Human Development; College of Liberal Arts; University Libraries; and the following departments: Curriculum and Instruction; French and Italian; German, Scandinavian and Dutch; Spanish and Portuguese Studies.


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Last Modified: November 30, 2017 at 14:20