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English Teaching Methodology

Dystopian Fiction

Global Environmental Citizenship through Contemporary Dystopian Fiction

In view of the planetary threat posed by human-caused ecological damage and disturbing warnings from the scientific community as well as social movements such as Fridays for Future and Extinction Rebellion, it should come as no surprise that the role and significance of education for sustainable development are becoming more and more recognised in educational research and policy documents. This is where the concept of global and ecological education comes into play, which is based on the literary and cultural orientations of ecocriticism and provides an essential contribution to the discourse of global teaching of English as a foreign language (EFL).

Literary texts from the genre of the (young adult) dystopian fiction are ideal for this purpose. In their contemporary realisations, they offer multiple opportunities to discuss global concerns and thus enhance critical thinking and active engagement with the scenarios portrayed. Through their combination of exciting coming-of-age tales, romantic elements, and adventure stories with socially relevant questions, the texts address adolescents

and young adults very directly on the one hand, but on the other hand also contain elements of cultural and social criticism that can be fruitful for teaching.

In addition to topics such as social (in)justice, political oppression, surveillance or the challenges of the increasing mechanisation of society, many texts also deal with the consequences of climate change, waste of resources, and environmental pollution, or fundamentally consider the relationship between man and the environment.

In our research we make a case for the importance of literature pedagogy in times of unprecedented crisis. On the basis of selected text examples, it is explored how dystopias can contribute to a closer link between English teaching and approaches such as education for sustainable development, ecological education, and environmental literacy.

This is also the context of the dissertation project by Nadine Krüger

Invited Lecture by Prof. Dr. Eisenmann: Environmental Discourses in Literature Classes: Nick Hayes' Graphic Novel 'The Rime of the Modern Mariner'

Prof. Dr. Maria Eisenmann will participate with a lecture at the two-day virtual conference on Literature and the Anthropocene in EFL education hosted by the Luleå University of Technology  (Sweden). The conference brings together an international group of researchers, who will share their insights into how literature studies in EFL Education can address topics associated with the Anthropocene.

Prof. Dr. Eisenmann's lecture with will take place on February 20 at 2pm.

Find the Conference Programhere !

The conference is free of charge, but registration is required. The registration is open until 14 February 2024.

For further information visit the official Website.