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Journal ArticleDOI

The Cultural Approach to Italian: A Sample Unit for the First Semester of Italian or General Language

01 Oct 1942-The Modern Language Journal (Blackwell Publishing Ltd)-Vol. 26, Iss: 6, pp 442-451
TL;DR: For instance, the authors argues that the student should come into contact with the culture of the country, primarily through the medium of the foreign tongue, while he is developing skill in the use of the language, not as has formerly been the case, after he has "covered the grammar."
Abstract: THE assumption in conventional language courses has been that after the mechanics of the language were mastered attention would be given to the appreciation of foreign cultures. Usually this was done through the medium of English as an incidental part of the foreign-language course. Such assumptions ignore the fact that comparatively few students of language survive the drill period, and consequently whatever knowledge a student gains in this direction is largely incidental and more in the nature of a by-product than of a significant outcome--rarely even as an incidental by-product. The trend in modern foreign-language teaching is to have the student come into contact with the culture of the country, primarily through the medium of the foreign tongue, while he is developing skill in the use of the language--not as has formerly been the case, after he has "covered the grammar." In other words, the pupil is to sharpen his linguistic tools on content worth communicating from the standpoint of the thought, ideas or information expressed-cultural material, it may be, of a type calculated to introduce him to the foreign country and its people in relation to our own national life and to world progress in the arts and sciences.' An overview of the life and culture of the country through the medium of the foreign language is not only educationally worthwile but also desirable as a background for the study of its literature. Thus culture and language are integrated, one reinforces the other, neither is sacrificed, and the sum total of the outcomes is greater not only in terms of ability in language and information but also in terms of student interest. The conviction is strong that language should be learned from the start in and through cultural content-through material and exercises that have some significance in terms of the information and ideas contained apart from the mere facts of language itself. The accompanying unit is a minor sample of the cultural approach which is beginning to take root in the modern foreign-language teaching in the
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TL;DR: This article found that foreign language teachers were deeply concerned with proposed reorganizations of secondary school work, shifts in general educational trends, the effects and needs of war, and new or resurgent emphases in our social structure.
Abstract: THE TRIENNIUM ending December 1942 showed no lessening in the amount of reportage of opinion and investigation in foreign language teaching, if the 905 items listed by Tharp (140, 141, 142) in his annual bibliographies are a fair index. A certain truculence and a defensive attitude mark the majority of these reports, partly because the major concern of foreign language teachers during this period was with the threat to the place of their subjectmatter in the common school curriculum. They were deeply concerned with proposed reorganizations of secondaryschool work, shifts in general educational trends, the effects and needs of war, and new or resurgent emphases in our social structure. This concern explains largely also their preoccupation with ways and means of adapting language instruction to external conditions, through curriculum integration, socialization, personalized teaching, the enrichment of course content, the stimulation of pupil interest, and their persistent searching and defense of the values of foreign language study. It was a period of marked unrest.

9 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
TL;DR: This article found that foreign language teachers were deeply concerned with proposed reorganizations of secondary school work, shifts in general educational trends, the effects and needs of war, and new or resurgent emphases in our social structure.
Abstract: THE TRIENNIUM ending December 1942 showed no lessening in the amount of reportage of opinion and investigation in foreign language teaching, if the 905 items listed by Tharp (140, 141, 142) in his annual bibliographies are a fair index. A certain truculence and a defensive attitude mark the majority of these reports, partly because the major concern of foreign language teachers during this period was with the threat to the place of their subjectmatter in the common school curriculum. They were deeply concerned with proposed reorganizations of secondaryschool work, shifts in general educational trends, the effects and needs of war, and new or resurgent emphases in our social structure. This concern explains largely also their preoccupation with ways and means of adapting language instruction to external conditions, through curriculum integration, socialization, personalized teaching, the enrichment of course content, the stimulation of pupil interest, and their persistent searching and defense of the values of foreign language study. It was a period of marked unrest.

2 citations

Journal Article
TL;DR: The authors investigated stereotypical images about Italy held by students learning Italian in a renowned public university in Malaysia and found that one-third of the stereotypical representations of Italy provided by the students were culinary-oriented and referred to various foods associated with the country.
Abstract: Stereotypical representations of Italy have been widely explored from European and North American perspectives. However, few studies have been done in an Asian context. This study addresses this gap and investigates stereotypical images about Italy held by students learning Italian in a renowned public university in Malaysia. The findings revealed that the language learners held overwhelmingly positive images about Italy and the Italian people. However, these images were restricted in scope and limited to simplistic notions about the country, its culture and inhabitants. One-third of the stereotypical representations of Italy provided by the students were culinary-oriented and referred to various foods associated with the country. On the other hand, the images about Italian art and culture were less specific (only one of Italy’s cultural giants–Leonardo da Vinci–was mentioned by name). The article concludes with a discussion on the pedagogical implications of the findings.

2 citations

References
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01 Sep 1928

2 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
01 Dec 1928

1 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
01 Sep 1930

1 citations

Journal ArticleDOI
01 Mar 1934

1 citations