English Teaching Methodology

Jennifer Meier

Typically British?! A diachronic - imagological analysis of British national stereotypes in English textbooks from 1871 until now

Jennifer Meier (JMU Würzburg)

Supervisors:  Prof. Dr. Maria EisenmannProf. Dr. Rüdiger Ahrens 

Historical didactics and especially textbook research has been neglected so far. But to make progress, it is not only necessary to look forward, but also to look back into what we already know. A lot of knowledge and disputes from today were already debated in the early 19th century. Since then, schoolteachers and educators have been negotiating how cultural studies should be taught in the EFL classroom. Naturally, political and social tendencies have influenced its curricula and thereby also have shaped the cultural contents of the textbooks.
This doctoral dissertation intends to depict and define cultural discourse in foreign language didactics, using the example of Great Britain. Its purpose is to show that a historical continuum is present in the disputes of cultural studies in modern language teaching. Imagology can help to explore how national stereotypes have developed and were established in English textbooks: from the early language teaching onwards, where cultural facts assisted us to contrast the differences between nations to transcultural learning nowadays, when pupils are learning that they are part of a hybrid world. With this knowledge in our minds we will be capable to further establish transcultural learning and thereby improve modern English textbooks and modern English teaching in general.

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