By David Graddol, Linda Thompson and Mike Byram (Editors)
Those papers from the twenty fourth Annual assembly of BAAL (University of Durham, September 1991), were chosen for the range of viewpoint which they provide at the subject matter of language and tradition, and at the manner within which they mirror present considering at the interdependence of language use and situational context.
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Extra resources for Language & Culture: Papers From the Annual Meeting of the British Association of Applied Linguistics Held at Trevelyan College, University of Durham, September 1991
Here students are taught in their 'mother tongue' for the first few years of primary school, learning english as a second language at the same time. Then at Standard 3 they switch from English as study to English as medium of instruction, whilst their mother tongue is now taught as study. A major problem with this strategy is the artificiality of the concept of mother tongue. Young children living in urban townships may find themselves living next door to Nguni speakers, across the road from Sesotho, whilst their parents derive variously from Xhosa or other language groups.
Elders constantly harangued women and young men to observe traditional custom. But their own idea of custom and the terms they used to describe it were so fixed that they could not see that the majority of the population by then understood something else by them. 'Under the cover of set terms and vocabulary, the rebellious and disadvantaged had smuggled in new meanings' (1987:352) Parkin, then, puts forward the notion of internal cultural debate, emphasising process and change in cultural as well as political identity, in contrast with Bloch's emphasis on fixity and coercion.
Leach's answer to this problem was that Kachin identity was based on a common 'ritual language' that defined the political economic integrity of the Kachins and through which what could and could not be 'correctly' said in the political discourse of the Kachins was determined. The changes and variations apparent in the region can therefore be rationalised as conceptual moments of the 'same' social structure, their 'meaning' is to be understood in terms of an underlying 'grammar of ritual action'.
Language & Culture: Papers From the Annual Meeting of the British Association of Applied Linguistics Held at Trevelyan College, University of Durham, September 1991 by David Graddol, Linda Thompson and Mike Byram (Editors)