Prof. Dr. Georgios Ypsilandis (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and Catholic, Griechenland)

Impact of pragmatic infelicities to curriculum and methodology

Pragmatic infelicities in cross-linguistic/cross-cultural communication have been recorded and discussed in several studies within the context of foreign language (FL) teaching and learning. This paper refers to a series of systematic studies conducted with the same instruments of research, following the exact same procedure and  in several languages. The study provides evidence of language transfer unsuitable persuasive discourse conventions; forms of expression, rhetorical and persuasive strategies and style, norms and expectations about self-presentation which contribute to either pragmalinguistic or sociopragmatic failure. The research setup is a scholarship application letter writing initially evaluated by native speakers and later by non-native users of the target language. Pedagogical implications which result for target language (English versus other non-international languages) and thereupon the syllabus: (a) about what could be safely taught, (b) what may be avoided (possible  limitations), and (c) what the learner can be encouraged to transfer from L1 in specific situations will be discussed. Finally, identifying  teaching procedures (method, implicit or explicit) for this task in order to support FL leaners to avoid pragmatic pitfalls in the foreign language will be presented.

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