Damian J. Rivers PhD, MA, MSc

 Associate Professor [Communication]

 Center for Meta-Learning, Future University Hakodate

 Hakodate, Hokkaido, Japan, 041-8655
 
Research Themes
  • Applied Linguistics
  • Conversation / Discourse Analysis
  • Educational Psychology
  • Media Communication
  • Political Communication
  • Pragmatics
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Social Media
  • Social Psychology
  • Visual Communication


 

Despite unsubstantiated claims of best practice, the division of language-teaching professionals on the basis of their categorization as ‘native-speakers’ or ‘non-native speakers’ continues to cascade throughout the academic literature. It has become normative, under the rhetorical guise of acting to correct prejudice and/or discrimination, to see native-speakerism as having a single beneficiary – the ‘native-speaker’ – and a single victim – the ‘non-native’ speaker. However, this unidirectional perspective fails to deal with the more veiled systems through which those labeled as native-speakers and non-native speakers are both cast as casualties of this questionable bifurcation. This volume documents such complexities and aims to fill the void currently observable within mainstream academic literature in the teaching of both English, and Japanese, foreign language education. By identifying how the construct of Japanese native-speaker mirrors that of the ‘native-speaker’ of English, the volume presents a revealing insight into language teaching in Japan.

 


 

This book adopts a sociolinguistic perspective to trace the origins and enduring significance of hip-hop as a global tool of resistance to oppression. The contributors, who represent a range of international perspectives, analyze how hip-hop is employed to express dissatisfaction and dissent relating to such issues as immigration, racism, stereotypes and post-colonialism. Utilizing a range of methodological approaches, they shed light on diverse hip-hop cultures and practices around the world, highlighting issues of relevance in the different countries from which their research originates. Together, the authors expand on current global understandings of hip-hop, language and culture, and underline its immense power as a form of popular culture through which the disenfranchised and oppressed can gain and maintain a voice. This thought-provoking edited collection is a must-read for scholars and students of linguistics, race studies and political activism, and for anyone with an interest in hip-hop.

 


 

This volume develops a comprehensive understanding of the manner in which dominant/emergent ideologies, discourses and social structures impact language education. As co-editors of this volume concerned by the formation and impact of social inequalities, we see significant opportunity to document these varied channels across multiple contexts by conceptualizing them collectively as “-isms in language education”. The chapters within this volume aim to develop a comprehensive understanding of the manner in which dominant and emergent ideologies, discourses and social structures impact language education. The contributing authors stand firm behind a belief that various forms of marginalization are adverse not only for those who lack felicitous conditions but for everyone in society, “regardless of our particular memberships in target and non-target groups” (Thompson & Smith, 1991: 1-2).

 


 

The conceptualization of this volume derives from Indian esoteric philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895-1986) and his numerous reflections on the struggle facing individuals within organized structures and systems of thought, belief and action. The "known” can be defined as the tyranny of the expected or the “dogma in which we are conditioned” (Krishnamurti, 1954/1975: 58) with such cognitive entrapments adequately pointing toward individual susceptibility to “the conditions of institutions and the effects of institutions” (Spivak, 1990: 785). Despite superficial proclamations advocating emancipation, "the known" networks of day-to-day existence in which we participate often depend, for their very survival, upon multifarious forms of psychological oppression and enslavement. Aldous Huxley (1954/1975: 12-13) once observed how all “organized beliefs are based on separation, though they may preach brotherhood” and the domain of language education is certainly not immune from the cunning calculations of authoritarian dictate. Throughout, the domain of language education is shown as a most accommodating host to various forms of sectarian authority and numerous examples are provided illustrating these dynamics in localized contexts.


 

Within foreign language education inadequate attention has been paid to documenting the dynamics of identity development, negotiation and management. This book looks at these dynamics in specific relation to otherness, in addition to attitudinal and behavioural overtones created through use of the term “foreign”. The chapters pursue a collective desire to move the notion of identity away from theoretical abstraction and toward the lived experiences of foreign language teachers and students. While the identities entangled with these interactions owe a significant measure of their existence to the immediate social context, they can also be actively developed by their holders. The collection of chapters within this book demonstrate how foreign language education environments (traditional and non-traditional) are ideal locations for the development of a sophisticated repertoire of discursive strategies used in the formulation, navigation, expression and management of social identities and multiple selves.

 


 

The relative status of native and non-native speaker language teachers within educational institutions has long been an issue worldwide but until recently, the voices of teachers articulating their own concerns have been rare. Existing work has tended to focus upon the position of non-native teachers and their struggle against unfavourable comparisons with their native-speaker counterparts. However, more recently, native-speaker language teachers have also been placed in the academic spotlight as interest grows in language-based forms of prejudice such as "native-speakerism" – a dominant ideology prevalent within the Japanese context of English language education. This innovative volume explores wide-ranging issues related to native-speakerism as it manifests itself in the Japanese and Italian educational contexts to show how native-speaker teachers can also be the targets of multifarious forms of prejudice and discrimination in the workplace.