WORLD NEWS: No. 38 December 1996


Educating Educators for the 21st Century
By Iva Pychová
Letter from the President
Congress Calendar
Forum on Controversial Issues
News and Views
Books and Journals


Educating Educators for the 21st Century

by Iva Pychová

The teachers basic functions - conveying knowledge (instruction) and shaping the students` personalities (through education) have been changing through the course of time, educational theories, and policies of varied societies. The teacher's roles, moving from the main source of information to the "fly on the wall" have been the results of numerous methodological considerations, also including the students` partial or total learning autonomy The rapidly growing amount of knowledge in the present time and the increasing occurrence of (commonly tolerated) dishonest behaviour ( not speaking about criminality) represent challenges to the future-teachers` preparation. Concepts of theoretical, reflective or mental student-teachers` training are viewed together with education building on the needs analysis or exceeding it - in Vygotsky`s opinion. Related to these questions is also the balance between emotional, ethical and aesthetic education on the one side and the intellectual development of students on the other.(...)

Thinking of education in the 21st century we have to make an analysis of requirements laid on today's pupils when they live and work in the 21st century. Generally it is considered that today's pupils will need to face an enormous amount of information that they will have to acquire - by means of technology or other means - autonomously. Also, they will need to cope with a number of problems, manage various situations and relationships, perhaps exploiting the help of the others, but their final decision will have to be made independently.

Trying to match the function of today's school with the described needs it is necessary to mention two basic tasks that school always fulfilled:

(1) Transmission of knowledge (instruction)

(2) The formation of students personalities and behaviour (education).

The Domain of Instruction

Facing the large amount of knowledge that school should convey to students, moreover the knowledge that is quickly developing and changing the science and technology, it has been regarded as the most reasonable and logical to make the student familiar with the basic, most essential issues of particular subjects, their relatively stable cores. In order that the students were able to acquire the newly appearing out-of-school information autonomously, students` metacognitive knowledge, i.e. their study skills, is developed.

The Domain of Education

In the domain of education the present school policy is generally oriented towards increasing students` independence, e.g. learner- centred approach stresses the learners` share in and responsibility for the most of the classroom and out-of-school activities. Strategies and forms of studies requiring independent personal involvement such as problem solving, self-study or distant education represent various forms of autodidactics. One of the advantages of team work (pair work, group work) that present classroom management prides itself on is that it enables each student to work at his/her pace. The role of the teacher in this system of learner-centred and sometimes even learner-enrolled education is that of a facilitator or assistant, one who is providing favourable conditions, climate and counsels for learning.

Side Effects

However, as has happened in other fields of human activities, such as stopping the Nile from flooding its lower areas, some side effects have been appearing recently even from well-intentioned approaches.

At first, most students find the instruction of basic knowledge boring. (No wonder: presenting the gist of various novels makes them look almost the same.) Compared to school instruction, the world of out-of-school information is found to be much more interesting. Although out-of-school information is sometimes not reliable, it is acquired autonomously and often superficially. Further, some students, mostly undergraduates, fail to deepen their independent studies and thus they do not find the university curricula very difficult to master. University examinations which cover basic knowledge sometimes conceal that there is not any other knowledge behind the basic facts.

Also, most students have really learned how to cope with given problems. Following the example of modern economic thinking, some students accomplish their learning tasks in the most economical way, that is in the easiest, fastest and simplest manner- even if mostly mediocre. It has to be noted that producing quality results usually requires hard work, finding the best solutions is often time-consuming and really creative outcomes seem simple only when produced by a genius (Weisberg, 1986).

The orientation of education towards rising students` independence seems to have neglected the whole area of shaping students` behaviour, ethical values, empathy, tolerance, as well as most of the aesthetic values. Unfortunately, students often witness the acceptance of some dishonest behaviour. E.g. lying has become a desirable business skill called "not revealing the true state of affairs". Bribery, or "supporting business by personal presents", has become legal in some states. Slandering is one form of election campaign, while dirty tricks in the stock exchange are considered the top of business mastery. School education with its stress on honesty, tolerance, empathy etc. seems old-fashioned in the world of keen competition, go-getting and money-hunting.

Educating students to become independent of other peoples opinions may bring a positive effect in that the students may try to create his/her own opinion. A negative effect may be a total contempt for the other people's opinions, rules of behaviour or ethical values and the autonomy in selecting one's own rules and values, though sometimes antisocial. The teacher, left with a facilitating role, is often helpless, face to face with some students` violence against each other, alcohol consumption or even drugs.

Also the "coping tendencies" (analysed by Boekaerts, 1992) mostly represent rather superficial, mediocre types of learning. Being taught to solve given problems only, some students do not develop the ability to reveal problems and to generate new, original ideas. And at least but not last, our society believes that it is today's young generation who are going to restructure and innovate the human knowledge of tomorrow. The question is: "How can they accomplish this extremely demanding task knowing (superficially) only the gist of today's knowledge? The latest findings in creativity (Runco, 1990) have proved that any new step in human knowledge requires the acquisition of expertise in a given domain. We can hope that today's young generation are going to change in the manner of the English Prince Hal, who later became mighty King Henry V, and will make a breach in the walls of science and art.

Theoretical and practical preparation of teachers in Colleges of Education has developed in accordance with school policies that defined the roles of teachers. With the learner-centred approach the teacher ceased to be the source of information and the "spiritus agens" in the classroom and changed gradually into an organiser, prompter, facilitator (Harmer, 1991) and even a neutral observer -"a fly on the wall" (Johnson, Paultson, 1976). Simultaneously, the theoretical aspect of teachers preparation gave way to experiential knowledge and to his/her own reflection about what he/she might do better in the classroom next time (Ho, 1995). Reflective teaching was a bandwagon for some time (Wallace, 1991) before it was replaced by " training on the job". In " training on the job" the classroom itself becomes a new teacher's incubator, the College of Education being just a complementary institution. Watching experienced teachers (mentors) teach has a lot of advantages (e.g. getting to know the "knack" how to manage the behaviour of pupils in puberty, etc.), but also disadvantages: Apart from the dependence on one model only, there may be the danger of a Jesuit proverb saying that "The purpose sanctifies the means", in other words, "What works is good", even if it might be pedagogically or psychologically unacceptable (e.g. irony, humiliation, ridicule etc.) Thus the next step necessary is mentors` training at Colleges of Education (Moon, 1994). However, research has proved (Swanwick, 1990) that student-teachers feel neglected, overlooked, considered a burden in secondary schools and they miss the safety of their College discussions.

Fortunately, the situation in teachers training is not the same in all countries. In some countries it has not yet reached the state of affairs described above, but the train of tendencies is in motion. In other countries the countermeasures are being taken, especially after poor results of the pupils` knowledge were revealed (Paten, 1993). Slogans like " Teachers to the Front", "Back to Basics" or sentences such as "There is no reason to imagine that pupils learn from talking" (Lawlor, 1990) prove that low effectiveness of the current approaches, attitudes and means have been admitted. The ideas of L.S.Vygotsky about "zones of proximate development" (i.e. areas of abilities that a pupil can acquire first with the help of the teacher, then by himself/herself) and "teaching proceeds development" emphasising the role of the teacher who knowingly selects and controls the activities of the pupil thus stimulating certain areas of his/her knowledge and behaviour, have become re-recognised. Nevertheless, the teacher should not take over the total responsibility for the pupils` learning on his/her shoulders as it used to be in the past. As the old saying claims: "The teacher should teach and the students should study."

Ostrava University College of Education Enrichment Program

At Ostrava University College of Education the preparation of future teachers of English has preserved both the theoretical and experiential component of the student-teachers` preparation, mentor guidance, as well as self-reflection. Besides, the training was enriched by seminars in psycholinguistics and especially in Creative English. In these seminars the trainees study and experience fundamentals of developing creative behaviour in their future pupils. The emphasis is laid on expertise in the field of the students` specialisation, on their own and their future pupils` divergent thinking and creativity. The future teachers` role of being not only instructors but also educators is stressed together with socially positive values, development being their major educational task.


The analysis of the topic "Educating Educators for the 21st Century" contains several implications:

1.Anticipating the needs of the 21st century in education the majority of measures taken concerned instruction, less education of moral and emotional aspects of the pupils` personalities.

2.Not all consequences of measures taken in instruction have been considered thoroughly in advance.

3.Learner-centredness supported at the expense of the teacher's roles does not seem to bring expected effects.

4.In order to develop the student's abilities he/she cannot be allowed to work at his/her own - sometimes slow -pace. On the contrary, the student's pace of work should be increased appropriately to his/her age and level of abilities.

Theory cannot be eliminated from teacher training. The necessity to promote the knowledge of mentors is evidence of this fact. Besides theory, practice and self-reflection, the importance of making student-teachers familiar with ways to develop divergent thinking, to generate new ideas and inspire creativity of the pupils seems inevitable in order to raise the quality of education in the 21st century.

REFERENCES Boekaesters,M. 1992. The adaptable learning process: Initiating and maintaining behavioural change. Applied psychology: an international review, vol.4, 1992, no.4, pp.377-397.

Harmer,J. 1991. The practice of English language teaching. Longman Group UK Limited.

Ho,B. 1995. Using lesson plans as a means of reflection. ELTJ, vol.49, no.1, pp. 66-71.

Johnson,P.- Paulston,C.B. 1976. Individualizing in the language classroom. Cambridge.

Lawlor,S. 1990. Teachers mistaught. Centre for policy studies.

Moon,J. 1994. Teachers as mentors: a route to in-service development. ELTJ, vol.48, no.4, pp. 347-355.

Paten,J. 1993. The current state in education. The Times, 18th January 1993.

Runco,M.A. 1990. Implicit theories and ideational creativity. In: M.A.Runco- R.S.Albert (Eds) Theories of creativity. Newbury Park, CA: Sage Publications, pp. 234-252.

Swanwick,K. 1990. The necessity of teacher education. In: N.Graves (Ed) : The initial training of teachers. London University, p.96.

Wallace,M.J. 1991. Training foreign language teachers - a reflective approach. Cambridge University Press.

Weisberg,R.W. 1986. Creativity, genius and other myths. New York: W.H.Freeman and Co.

Editor's Note: Iva Pychová is a professor at Ostrava University. She is also the president of the Central European Region FIPLV. The article is an abbreviation of the paper presented during the Regional Conference which took place in Zielona Góra (Poland) in September 1995.

La note du Président

Ia orana ite matahiti api !

Pour la nouvelle année, j'ai reçu une carte de voeux en plus de trente langues. J'en ai choisi une pour vous tous. Je crois savoir de quelle langue il s'agit, mais cela n'a vraiment aucune importance. Ce qui importe, c'est le plaisir que je ressens, que vous ressentez aussi, en essayant de la prononcer. Que je ressens, et que vous ressentiriez aussi, pour toutes les langues du monde. Sommes nous anormaux ? Est-ce que c'est le rejet de l'autre qui est normal ? Qui le sait ? Ce que nous savons, c'est que la vie ne vaut d'être vécue que dans un monde de Paix et de curiosité positive pour ce qui est différent de nous. C'est aussi pour cela que nous sommes enseignants de langues.

En novembre 1996, la FIPLV était représentée par son Secrétaire Général, Denis Cunningham, au Congrès de la Japan Association for Language Teaching à Hiroshima, dans le cadre d'une action Linguapax. En mars 1997, la FIPLV tiendra son Congrès à Recife, au Brésil. Depuis le 1/9/96, elle fait partie des Organisations Non Gouvernementales du Conseil de l'Europe. En juillet 96 elle remettait un rapport de faisabilité concernant l'utilisation par les enseignants de langue d'un serveur informatique international qui pourrait être consacré aux langues (projet Getall/Tel*Lingua, G7 et Commission européenne).

Quelques nouvelles, dans le désordre, nous montrant que le processus de réelle mondialisation de notre fédération est en marche. Pour que nous puissions progresser dans cette voie, sans abandonner les terrains où la FIPLV est déjà traditionnellement présente, il faut nous donner certains instruments. C'est pourquoi Terry Atkinson (ALL, UK) nous proposera un prototype de site Web de la FIPLV lors du Congrès de Recife. C'est aussi pourquoi nous avons mis en place une réflexion sur le financement des activités de la FIPLV et de ses Régions, dont nous reparlerons, également à Recife.

Bonne année,

Michel Candelier.





For the first time FIPLV is organising a congress in Latin-America. I visited Recife last September to meet the organising committee and to see the venue. The congress team was working hard in sorting out the hundreds of abstracts that had been sent in. By now they have the programme ready. Here are the plenary lectures:

The three days will be full of academically high quality presentations, workshops and poster sessions. The speakers will be from all over the world.We will also have the chance of learning something about Brazil and its culture.

The Federal University of Pernambuco has a brandnew Congress Hall, where most of the activities will take place.

It is worth while giving Recife couple of extra days to experience its warmth and hospitality.

Hope to see you in Recife!

Tuula Penttila FIPLV Acting Vice-President
Central European Region
The 2nd CER Conference, Pozna? 1996

In September 1996 the 2nd CER Conference took place under the auspices of the Modern Language Association of Poland (PTN) and Adam Mickiewicz University in Pozna?. The theme of the conference was 'Global Problems and Foreign Language Teaching'. The Conference was attended by numerous foreign language teachers from several Polish universities and schools including their foreign lecturers, as well as guests from the universities in Hungary and the Czech Republic.

The Conference was opened by the President of PTN and the representative of FIPLV Prof. Dr hab. Teresa Siek-Piskozub, the Dean of the Philological Faculty Prof. Dr hab. Stanis?aw Puppel and the Director of the English Language Institute Prof. Dr hab. Jacek Fisiak.

Twenty-one papers presented in the course of the Conference were given during two plenary sessions and in three foreign language sessions - English, French and German. Papers presented at the plenary sessions tackled global foreign language teaching problems, e.g. the development and transformation of the current foreign language methodology (I. Pychová), students' motivation to foreign language learning (Z Lengyel), interactive employment of videophone technology (P.P?usa) etc. Papers given in the three language sessions seemed to be of three particular orientations: While the French language session focused on skills acquisition (for instance writing - M. Vlastoff, advanced speaking - B. Py?k), the German language session dealt with intercultural (E. Zawadzka, M. Szczodrowski), interethnic (I. Prokop) and pragmatic aspects of language teaching (K. Myczko), and the English language session was oriented towards more global issues, such as peace education (T. Siek-Piskozub), European studies programmes (E. Dzier?awska), Corpus-based pedagogy (P. Kaszubski). An idea permeating through all the three language sessions was self-directed or semi-autonomous learning (e.g. M. Elavksy, W. Wilczy?ska).

An inseparable part of the Conference was an exhibition of teaching materials by various publishing houses, foreign and Polish, as well as presentations by their representatives. The policy of the Polish journal Foreign Languages at School was explained by its editor, H. Wi?niewska. Most of the papers given at the 2nd CER Conference will be published in the PTN's journal Neofilolog

Iva Pychová

CERR-FIPLV President

CER-FIPLV Executive Meeting

The CER Executive Committee held its first meeting during the Second Regional Conference Global Issues in Language Teaching organised by Modern Language Association of Poland and hosted by Adam Mickiewicz University in Pozna? from 20th to 21st September 1996. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss perspectives of a regional co-operation. The members agreed that the priority should be encouraging other Central European countries to enter the FIPLV. This should be achieved by sending an account of the FIPLV activities and a proposal of co-operation to representatives of national organisations not represented in the CER. A suggestion was made to invite one representative with the status of observer from Croatia, Slovakia and Slovene, to the next meeting, possibly to be held in Pécs in autumn 1997.

Further, Zsolt Lengyel suggested initiating a new journal under the title Central European Studies in Applied Linguistics. This might act as a regional forum for exchanging views, information on research and for reviewing books published in the Central Europe.

The CER representatives took part in the conference giving reports of their research as well as informing about the plans for the regional co-operation.

Weronika Wilczy?ska CER-FIPLV Secretary General

Congress Calendar


11-15 March Annual Meeting of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). Venue: Orlando, FL USA. Information: Susan Bayley, TESOL, 1600 Cameron Street, Suite 300, Alexandria, Virginia 22314-2751, USA.

24 - 26 March 19th Congress of FIPLV. Theme: Towards Intercultural Understanding for the 21st Century: Language Learning in a Humanistic Context. Venue: Recife, Universidade Federal de Pernambuco, Brazil. Information: Francisco Gomes de Matos, Rua Setubal, 860b/apto.604 Boa Viagem - Recife, 51030-010 Pernambuco, Brazil. Fax: Int. 55814271881 E-mail: FIPLV@NPD.UFPE.BR or Tuula Penttila, Acting vice-president FIPLV, Viherlaaksontie 24, SF-02710 Espoo Finland. Fax: Int. Code + 358 0 5023 460, E-mail:

2 - 5 April 31st IATEFL International Conference. Venue: The Brighton Centre & Oak Hotel, Brighton, UK. Information: IATEFL, 3 Kingsdown Chambers, Kingsdown Park, Whitstable, Kent, CT5 2DJ, UK. Phone + 44 (0) 1227 276528, Facsimile +44 (0)1227 274415. Email Worldwide Web http: //

3-6 April Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. Venue: New York City, USA. Information: Northeast Conference, St. Michael's College, Dupont Hall, 29 Ethan Allen Avenue, Colchester, Vermont 05439, USA.

4-7April Conference "Language World" of the Association for Language Learning (ALL). Venue: Keele, United Kingdom. Information: ALL, C.Wilding, 16 Regent Place, Rugby CV212PN, United Kingdom.

21-23 April RELC Seminar. Theme: Learners and Language Learning. Venue: Singapore. Information: The Director (Attn: Seminar Secretariat), SEAMEO Regional Language Centre, 30 Orange Grove Road, Singapore 258352; tel.: (65) 7379044; facsimile: (65) 7342753; e-mail:

1-3 May 30th Pozna? Linguistic Meeting (PLM). Theme: Recent developments in linguistic theory and their application to language comparison. Venue: Adam Mickiewicz University in Pozna?. Information: Dr. hab. Katarzyna Dziubalska-Ko?aczyk, School of English, Adam Mickiewicz University, al. Niepodleg?o?ci 4, 61-874 Pozna?, Poland; tel.: + 48 61 528820; fax: + 48 61 523103; e-mail-DKASIA@IFA.AMU.EDU. PL

8-10 May 10th International Conference on Foreign and Second Language Acquisition. Theme: The implications of FLA research for foreign language teaching. Venue: Szczyrk, Poland. Information: Prof. Janusz Arabski, Institute of English, the University of Silesia, ul. ?ytnia 10, 41-205 Sosnowiec, Poland; tel/fax: + 48 32 191 74 17.

29July- 12th World Congress of Jewish Studies. Venue:

5August Jerusalem, Israel. Information: Ben-Zion Fischler, Council of the Teaching of Hebrew, P.O.B.7413, Jerusalem91073, Israel.

3-9August 11th Internationale Deutschlehrertagung of Der Internationale Deutschlehrerverband. Venue: Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Information: Gerard J. Westhoff, Institute of Education, Heidelberglaan 8, NL-3584 TC Utrecht, The Netherlands.

5-7 August Post-Congress on Problems of Teaching Modern Hebrew. Venue: Jerusalem, Israel. Information: Ben-Zion Fischler, Council of the Teaching of Hebrew, P.O.B. 7413, Jerusalem 91073, Israel.

8 - 10 September IATEFL. Theme: Teachers Develop Teachers Research 3. Venue: Oranim School of Education, Haifa University, Israel. Information: IATEFL, 3 Kingsdown Chambers, Kingsdown Park, Whitstable, Kent, CT5 2DJ, UK. Phone + 44 (0) 1227 276528, Facsimile +44 (0)1227 274415. Email Worldwide Web http: //

12-14 September Association for French Language Studies (AFLS) Colloquium. Theme: Les descriptions du Français: discours, corpus, analyses, applications. Venue: Université de Montpellier. Information: Dr. Anne Judge, Department of Linguistic and International Studies, University of Surrey, Guildford, GU2 5XH, United Kingdom; tel.: 01483 300 800; fax: 01483 302 605; e-mail:

25-27 September 28th Annual Conference of the Gesellschaft für Angewandte Linguistik (GAL). Theme: Medium Sprache. Venue: Universität Bielefeld, Germany. Information: Prof. Dr. Hans Strohner, Univeristät Bielefeld; Tel. 0521/106-6928; Fax: 0521/106-2996; http: //www/

27-30 December Conference of the Modern Language Association of America (MLA). Venue: to be announced. Information: MLA, 10Astor Place, New York, New York 10003-6981, USA.


27-30March Conference "Language World" of the Association for Language Learning (ALL). Venue: to be announced. Information: ALL, C.Wilding, 16 Regent Place, Rugby CV212PN, United Kingdom.

14-18 April 32nd IATEFL International Conference. Venue: UMIST, Manchester. Information: IATEFL, 3 Kingsdown Chambers, Kingsdown Park, Whitstable, Kent, CT5 2DJ, UK. Phone + 44 (0) 1227 276528, Facsimile +44 (0)1227 274415. Email Worldwide Web http: //

November dates 6th Latin American ESP Colloquium. Venue:

to be announced Argentina.Information: Françoise Salager-Meyer, Apartado 715 Mérida 5101, Venezuela.


Forum on Controversial Issues

Talking like a Lady: Some Issues concerning women's language
by Liliana Sikorska
"If you have nothing better to say could you please restrict your remarks to the weather and the roads", Mrs. Dashwood admonishes her youngest daughter in the oscar winning movie Sense and Sensibility based on the novel by Jane Austen. The book as well as the movie, set in the early 19th century England, points out many aspects of the propriety of women's language. The norms regulating feminine conduct are usually connected with their linguistic behavior. These rules have not changed much. The linguistic norms saying that women should "mind their language" associates correctness with femininity. There are simply things women should not talk about because they appear inappropriate in their mouths.

Here is a fragment of David Lodge's Nice Work to serve as illustration. The main hero Vic Wilcox wonders about the girl who fascinates him because of her unconventional linguistic behavior:

"He hadn't supposed she was a virgin, for God's sake, not the way she talked about penises and vaginas without so much as a blush; nor that she was a lezzie, in spite of the cropped hair. But there was something about her that was different from the other women he knew - Marjorie, Sandra, Shirley and her Tracey. Dress, for instance. Whereas they dressed (or, in the case of Tracey undressed) in a way which said, Look at me, like me, desire me, marry me, Robyn Penrose turned herself out as if entirely for her own pleasure and comfort. Stylishly mind, - none of your women's lib regulation dungarees - but without a hint of coquetry" (Lodge 1993: 763) (italics mine). In this short presentation I would like to indicate the connections between women's language and female linguistic behavioral patterns as associated with the ideology of female conduct.

We all remember mom's rules of linguistic behavior like: behave yourself, do not shout when you are in the company of adults, speak only when spoken to, do not talk back; can be addressed to both male and female children. However, it is more likely that it would be boys who would violate the rules and girls who would be reprimanded for the offense. The old saying "boys will be boys" includes the conviction that boys are noisy and very early in life learn to use more authoritarian/powerful language because they have to assert their position in a peer group, while girls learn the rules of cooperative behavior (Maltz and Borker, 1982, Tannen 1992). For any "linguistic offence" girls are more likely to hear: this is not how nice/little/good girls talk/behave. Such an approach bridges the idea of big girl/lady- like behavior with certain linguistic properties of women's language.

Various definitions stress that women's idiodialect is different from men's. Different patterns of speech, and consequently, a different understanding of linguistic patterns are usually labeled as genderlect (Maltz and Borker 1982: 197). There are two main methods of treating sex differences in a communicative framework for interpreting linguistic differences in women's and men's communicative competence: dominance approach and difference approach. The former is a reflection of men's dominance and women's subordination, while the latter asserts that man and woman belong to different subcultures: the difference in women's and men's communicative competence are clarified as reverberations of these different subcultures (Coates and Cameron 1988:65). Cross-sex communication is labeled by Maltz and Borker (1982: 196) as miscommunication. Such a stance includes the notions of cultural difference between the sexes. "When men and women have different experiences and operate in different social contexts, they tend to develop different genres of speech and different skills for doing things with words" (Maltz and Borker 1982: 200). This is connected with the patterns of domination and sexual roles in society and goes as deep as the perception of reality. Linking sociolinguistics and developmental psychology can explain some of the behavioral differences and, although, such an approach stresses difference between male- and female-cultures it does not have to have negative consequences for women. One has to be aware, however, that the ideology of conduct also includes a code of difference of behavior. This is what Deborah Cameron (1995: 172-176) calls verbal hygiene for women as she quotes older sources of conduct in which the predominant idea of women's behavior was that of being solitary and withdrawn, which in contemporary terms should be translated into prescriptions for being feminine, sweet and non-assertive, and most of all of avoiding garrulity.

The issue of the linguistic ideology of conduct cannot be confronted without understanding differences in women's and men's language, and is, in fact, indirectly based on assumptions that the world of males is different than the world of females, which is not far from the feminist claim that women occupy the private sphere (seen through the prism of their concern with private matters), while men occupy the public sphere. Robin Lakoff (1975: 8-18) maintains that women are forced to learn a weak, trivial and deferential style as a part of their socialization, which essentially trains them to be subordinate. Women's style is essentially a sign of their powerlessness. The process of "silencing" starts at puberty when children's roles start to alter. The boy is allowed and even encouraged to speak in public while the girl is taught to keep silent. Girls are given strict orders to speak only when spoken to. She is taught docility and submission. An adult female is deprived of the freedom of speech. This is why so many young women have problems with self-assertiveness and expressing themselves in public. Women's culture develops in the kitchen where they continue to speak among themselves; story-telling and gossip being the most prominent aspects of women's oral culture. If these women start to speak against the restrictions and break off the taboo, and if they are too forceful in claiming their rights, they are stigmatized as un-feminine.

Silencing is a powerful idea concerning women's ability of self-expression, both written and spoken. Sometimes, however, silence can have a reverse role: it is an effective weapon to defeat a woman who does not know what is wrong (Tannen 1993a: 177). Cooperation (in terms of solidarity) in conversation requires both participants to contribute an equal amount of data. As has already been mentioned some of this is also culture specific and may refer to class structure rather than to gender differences. The intersection of language and gender provides a rich site for analyzing how power and solidarity are created in discourse. In medieval texts this marks the different approaches to authority over written language. Silence is also important in defining the boundaries of utterances. Any attempt to understand how speakers use language necessarily refers to the context (in every sense, including at least textual, relational and instructional constraints), the speakers' conversational styles and, most crucially, the interaction amongst their styles (Tannen 1993a: 183).

Another interesting aspect is "the floor", identified with the speaker and the position of authority. In collaborative floors, referred to as group meetings, it appears that women largely outdo men in conversational situations (Edelsky 1993: 200). During group discussion women usually perform with much more authority, as they have more experience with working in groups because of their culture of story-telling and gossip. Speaking turns are associated with order; women do worse in longer, open talks and better in collaborative ones. "Collaborative floors find women joking, arguing, directing and soliciting responses more and men less, while the reverse was true for single ones" (Edelsky 1993: 220). Here power is a term appropriately configured as a traditionally male term; the way contemporary women access power to occupy "the floor" allows one to interpret their idiom as transgressing gender(ed) conditions of speaking and writing.

Silence in pragmatic terms refers to certain strategies of communication. Silence in gender interaction can have two different meanings, either submission (mostly in the case of female speakers) or dominance (mostly in the case of male speakers). Silence then can have different roles. It can be both a sign of powerlessness and subordination and a sign of power. Escape within one's self is not necessarily a symbol of submission; it may serve as a powerful tool of disagreement against the injustices of the prevailing system in which men dominate women as a class. This is not a question for this work. What is problematic here is the source and functioning of domination, as well as other intentions and effects. Tannen (1993a: 166) claims that one cannot interpret linguistic strategies such as indirectness, taciturnity, silence and tag questions, as submission. Their relational nature allows them to function differently in different speech situations. Such strategies are intended to create connections. In some contexts, a strategy that is designed to establish connections may be intended to create dominance in the mouth of another speaker. Tannen's article talks about the polysemy of the relationship between the dynamics of power and solidarity. She also introduced the notion of different conversational styles. Directness is less ambiguous than indirectness. Overlapping for example is always a signal of authority. Indirectness, however, allows the other person to choose the interpretation of one's utterance which suits him or her best. Polysemy is rooted in the different pragmatic situations and non-univocal interpretations of utterances. As a tool of control combined with some non-verbal aspects of such interaction language can convey power. Proximity in verbal interaction can mean aggression rather than affiliation in the context of a hierarchical rather than symmetrical relationship.

Robin Lakoff (1975) identifies two benefits of indirectness: defensiveness and rapport. Defensiveness refers to a speaker's preference not to go on record with an idea in order to be able to disclaim, rescind, or modify it if it does not meet with a positive response. The idea of power dynamics is based on the binary oppositions of indirectness vs. interruption, silence vs. volubility, topic raising and adversativeness, interruption or verbal conflict. In most sociolinguistic works women's language is rendered powerless with a tendency to be indirect. It is evidence that women do not feel entitled to make demands. Sometimes the discourse is so conventionalized that it is difficult to interpret it only under one condition (Tannen 1993a: 174). There is also a question of the sample group in which education, social background and status play an important role. Alice Freed and Alice Greenwood in their research (1996) on the use of "you know" proves that a gendered style cannot be adequately defined by counting individual speech variables removed from the specifics of the talk context. Men and women can speak and write differently, but that does not mean that they speak two different languages. Cameron (1985: 75) stresses that in communicative situations gender serves as a cultural matter of distinction, "a matter of differing (but equally valid) customs and values. It does not seem any longer to be a system of dominance and subordination."

The ideas of women's language and the subculture approach has valid claims for teachers of languages. While we cannot generalize that men and women learn languages using different strategies, we can certainly argue that male students are generally much more open and less inhibited by new group situations even if they do not know their fellow students. The implications are very simple; many times certain female students need to feel more comfortable and start out their conversations among themselves in order to break into the mode of public speech. Female students need to assert their positions within the group and find acceptance in order to voice their opinions, while male students are much more willing to undertake the risk of being challenged.


Cameron, D. (ed.), 1990. The Feminist Critique of Language. London: Routledge.

Cameron, D. 1985. Feminism and Linguistic Theory. New York: St. Martin's Press.

Cameron, D. 1995. Verbal Hygiene. London: Routledge.

Crawford, M. 1995. Talking Difference. On Gender and Language. London; SAGE publications.

Edelsky, C. 1993. "Who's got the floor?" in: Tannen, D. (ed.) 1993. 189-227.

Gumperz, J. (ed.) 1982. Language and Social Identity. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Lakoff, R. 1975. Language and Woman's Place. New York: Octagon Books.

Lodge, D. 1993. Trilogy: Changing Places, Small World, Nice Work. London: Penguin.

Maltz D. N. and Borker R. A. 1982. "A Cultural Approach to Male-Female Miscommunication", in: Gumperz, J. (ed.) 1982. 196-215.

Tannen, D. 1992. You Just Don't Understand. Women and Men in Conversation. London:Virago

Tannen, D. 1993. (ed.) Gender and Conversational Analysis. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Tannen, D. 1993a. "The Relativity of Linguistic Strategies: Rethinking Power and Solidarity in Gender and Dominance". in: Tannen, D. (ed.) 1993a. 165-188.

Editor's note: Dr. Liliana Sikorska is a professor in School of English at Adam Mickiewicz University, Pozna?, Poland





News and Views


FMF (Germany) issues a new newsletter - FMF - Mitteilungen. It will have a different function than the other publication the NM - Neusprachliche Mitteilungen aus Wissenschaft und Praxis, which is a professional journal of language teachers in Germany. The newsletter's primary function is to provide information to members, although reactions to the articles published in the journal are welcome.

FMF has finally found their office. All correspondence should be sent to: Von-Graevemeyer-Weg 33, 30539 Hanover, Tel: (0049) 511 9523746; Fax (0049) 5119523756; e-mail:


A scholarship fund has been established in memory of W.R. Lee the founder of IATEFL. The funds will be used to allow two teachers from the Czech Republic, Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovakia, Romania or Poland to attend the IATEFL Conference each year. These are countries with which Bill Lee had longest and closest association. Those interested in applying can obtain further details from the IATEFL head office.


Two interesting new publications from the IATEFL Special Interest Groups are now available from the IATEFL Head Office. They are:


Videos of five of the plenary lectures from the 30th IATEFL International Conference 1996 are now available from the IATEFL Head Office. They are:

For further information contact: Jill Stujduhar, Executive Officer, IATEFL, 3 Kingsdown Chambers, Kingsdown Park, Whitstable, Kent, CT5 2DJ, UK; tel: + 44 1227 276528; fax: + 44 1227 274415; e-mail:
Crossing Borders
November 1-4, 1996, Hiroshima - Japan

The 2300 participants, who attended the 22nd Annual International JALT Conference on Language Teaching/Learning, were able to enjoy and profit from an extensive and extremely rich four-day program. The venue, symbolically, was the International Conference Centre Hiroshima in the Peace Memorial Park. While most participants were Japanese or Japan-based, there was significant representative from Australia, Canada, Catalonia, Germany, Hong Kong, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, South Korea, Thailand, United Kingdom and United States of America. The UNESCO Linguapax sent their official delegation : Dr Félix Marti (President-International Linguapax Committee, Barcelona - Catalonia), Mr Denis Cunningham (Secretary - AFMLTA Inc, Secretary-General - FIPLV) and Prof. Dr Albert Raasch (Saarbrücken, Germany). Additional Linguapax-related speakers included the local coordinator of this element, Mr Kip Cates (Japan), Ms Madeleine du Vivier (President of IATEFL and FIPLV representative, UK), Prof. Dr Reinhold Freudenstein (Germany) and Ms Andrea Truckenbrodt (AFMLTA Inc. Linguapax SIG Convenor, Australia).

Under the rubric of 'Crossing Borders', the keynote and plenary speakers established the environment to facilitate the conference theme. Félix Marti's keynote address, 'Language Education for the World Peace', preceded plenary sessions by Dr Julian Edge ('Crossing Borders : Some Values to Declare'), Dr Teruhisa Horio ('Global Education in a Global Age') and Dr Braj Kachru ('Opening Borders with World Englishes : Theory in the Classroom').

While global issues, peace education and Linguapax provided the skeleton for the rich program, in the spirit of crossing borders, these elements were fleshed out in the c a 300 sessions, which included workshops, seminars, roundtable discussions and official or SIG meetings.

The influence of Linguapax has only just begun in Asia, deriving momentum from Linguapax V (Melbourne, Australia), the UNESCO Linguapax Delegation and other team members at JALT'96, the excellent work on global issues conducted by Kip Cates and others in Japan and South Korea, and by the peace education movement in Japan, highlighted in the JALT'96 program. This impetus is to continue and expand, as concrete proposals were made during one of the workshops, combining the publication of JALT'96 Proceedings, infiltration of conference programs in nearby countries, and in the network underwritten by the work of individuals involved in Linguapax at JALT'96. This networking and influence can be underpinned by, among other activities, the formation of an FIPLV Region for Southeast Asia and Southwest Pacific, the network of interested parties identified by K. Cates at JALT'96 through his SIG on Global Issues, and in activities generated by the AFMLTA Inc SIG for Linguapax.

In addition to the rich academic program, regular planning meetings and invaluable networking at such conferences, the socio-cultural program facilitated intercultural and professional exchange at a variety of functions and visits : visit to Hiroshima Peace Park and Peace Museum; Prentice Hall One Can Drink Party; President's Breakfast and Conference Banquette. The breakfast timeslot was used for daily Linguapax planning, lunch (when possible) for networking and dinner for 'crossing borders' followed by review of the day's sessions.

The JALT Board and Program Committee are to be commended for an excellent conference, impeccably run on such a large scale.

Denis Cunningham
Member, UNESCO Linguapax Delegation to JALT'96
European Centre for Modern Languages in Graz

For reasons beyond the control of the Council of Europe and the European Centre for Modern Languages - legal difficulties concerning the financial contribution to the European Commission - the 1996 Colloquy of the European Centre for Modern Languages could not be held at the initially scheduled dates, i.e. 14-15 Decmeber 1996. The new dates are 14 and 15 February 1997; the offical opening will take place in Graz on 13 February at 6 p.m.

The framework of the thematic colloquy workshops is:

The particular focus for each of these themes is on the areas relevant to teacher training, motivation building and materials development.

For more information: European Centre for Modern Languages, Mozarthof, Schubertstrasse 29, A-8010 Graz; tel.: + 43 316 323 554, fax: +43 316 322 157, e-mail:

Le prochain colloque annuel de l'Association for French Language Studies aura lieu à l'Université de Montpellier du 12 au 14 septembre 1997. Le sujet du colloque sera le suivant: Les Descriptions du Français: discours, corpus, analyses, applications. Les chercheurs-enseignants dans l'enseignement supérieur qui souhaitent proposer une communication sont priés d'en envoyer un résumé à Dr. Anne Judge, Department of Linguistic and International Studies, University Surrey, Guilford, GU2 5XH, United Kingdom; tél: 01483 300 800; fax: 01483 302 605; courrier électronique:, avant le 31 janvier 1997.
Bielefeld - Germany, 25.-27. September 1997

Die 28. Jahrestagung der Gesellschaft für Angewandte Linguistik (GAL) e.V. findet vom 25.-27. September 1997 an der Universität Bielefeld statt. Die Tagung steht unter dem Rahmenthema Medium Sprache. Das Thema wird in fünf Themenbereichen bearbeitet:

I. Medium Sprache: Eine Aufgabe für die Linguistik

II. Medium Sprache in Wirtschaft und Gesellschaft

III. Sprache: das Multimedium

IV. Sprachen durch Sprache: Medium Sprache im Fremdsprachenunterricht

V. St?rungen des Mediums Sprache

Weiterhin werden zu folgenden Bereichen Sektionen angeboten:

Phonetik, Lexik und Grammatik, Textlinguistik und Stilistik, Sprecherziehung/ Rhetorische Kommunikation, Medienkommunikation, Fachsprachliche Kommunikation, Soziolinguistik, Kontaktlinguistik, Kontrastive Lingustik und Interkulturelle Kommunikation, Übersetzungswissenschaft, Psycholinguistik, Klinische Linguistik, Sprachdidaktik, Unterrichtstechnologie, Computer-linguistik.

Daneben werden noch Arbeitskreise, Hauptvorträge und Fachausstellungen durchgeführt. Vortragsanmeldungen werden bis spätestens 15. April 1997 an die Geschäftsstelle erbeten.



Informationen: Prof. Dr. Hans Strohner, Univeristät Bielefeld; Tel. 0521/106-6928; Fax: 0521/106-2996; http: //www/ Vortragsanmeldungen: Prof. Dr. Dieter Wolff, Präsident der GAL, Berische Universität, Gesamthochschule Wuppertal, Fachbereich 4: Anglistik, 42097 Wuppertal; Tel./Fax 0202/439-2254; e-mail:;


Books and Journals

Publications received:

Neofilolog. Czasopismo Polskiego Towarzystwa Neofilologicznego. No. 12, 1996.

Studia Anglica Posnaniensia. An International Review of English Studies. Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza w Poznaniu. Vol. 30, 1996.

Neusprachliche Mitteilungen aus Wissenschaft und Praxis, Herausgegeben vom Fachverband Moderne Fremdsprachen (FMF), Heft 3, 3. Quartal 1996.

FMF-Mitteilungen. Mitteilungsblay des Fachverbandes Moderne Fremdsprachen. Nummer 1, November 1996.

E.T.A.I Forum. English Teachers' Association of Israel, Vol. VII, no. 3, 1996.

English Teachers' Journal. Ministry of Education Culture and Sport. Pedagogical Secretariat - English Inspectorate, Israel. No. 49, April 1996.

Tempus, Newsletter of the Federation of Foreign Language Teachers in Finland SUKOL, No. 6-7. 1996.

IATEFL Newsletter. No. 132, August 1996; No. 133, October-November 1996.

Global Issues in Language Education Newsletter, National Special Interest Group of the Japan Association of Language Teachers (JALT), Issue 24, September 1996

Eurocontact. Bulletin de la Région de l'Ouest de la FIPLV, No. 2, Octobre 1996

TESOL Greece. No. 52, October-December 1996.

ADAXE. Revista de Estudos e Experiéncias Educativas. Universidade de Santiago de Compostela. No. 12, 1996.

LINGUAPAX. Teaching Unit 1: We live in Just One World.

LINGUAPAX. Unidad Didactica 1: Vivimos en un Solo Mundo.

R. Grasa and D. Reig. UNESCO-LINGUAPAX, Centre UNESCO de Catalunya

Herrn Dieter Herold
Kulenkampstraße 15 H
D-23566 Lübeck
Please find enclosed my cheque / money order for CHF __________ made payable to 'FIPLV' which covers the purchase of ________________copy / copies of Linguapax V including postage and packing.

Name: _________________________________________________________

Address: ________________________________________________________




Linguapax V is the 170pp production of all papers delivered at the international workshop, Linguapax V, held in Melbourne (Australia) in mid-1995, on the theme of languages and peace.

Funded by UNESCO and supported by the Australian National Commission for UNESCO, it was organised by the Australian Federation of Modern Language Teachers Associations Inc (AFMLTA Inc) on behalf of the Fédération Internationale des Professeurs de Langues Vivantes (FIPLV), the International Linguapax Committee (ILC) and UNESCO.

Invited participants from Australia, Catalonia, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Japan, New Zealand, Poland and Sri Lanka presented excellent papers on their experiences at national and international levels on the topic of languages and peace.

We commend to you this excellent publication on one of the cornerstones of teaching and learning languages : languages for tolerance and peace.

These are available for CHF 20. If you would like to order a copy or copies please complete the order form and forward it to Dieter Herold

Notes for Contributors

Contributions, announcements and letters should be sent to the Editor's address. Advertisements should be sent to Dieter Harold (see back cover). Short contributions (up to 250 words), such as letters and announcements, can be type-written. Longer contributions should be accompanied by a PC-readable disc, with the article both in the original WP format (e.g. WordPerfect, AmiPro, Word for Windows) and in ASCII form (i.e. a .TXT file). Please provide a brief bio-statement with the office address. Contributions and discs are non-returnable. The Editor reserves the right to make editorial changes in any manuscript. The author will be consulted if substantial changes are envisaged.

A Message from the Editor

I hope all our readers had a better year 1996 than the Federal University of Pernambuco, the host of the FIPLV Congress in 1997. All planning to participate in the Congress are advised to read the very latest news below from the organising committee in Recife.


The Organising Committee of XIX FIPLV Congress was deeply shocked with the news of the fire that destroyed the large Auditorium in the Federal University of Pernambuco, where the Opening Ceremony and plenaries were to take place. In consultation with the Rector of the host University and with the approval of FIPLV's President, Dr.Michel Candelier, it was decided to look for an alternate venue, on campus, which would prove to be a satisfactory venue for holding all of the Congress activities.

We are very happy to announce that such venue has been found : the Coligio da Aplicagco of the Centro de Educagco. In English, this means the University High School. Its very spacious indoor Gymnasium will become the site for the Opening Ceremony and three general plenaries. There will be space for all of the 9 section activities, plus self-service lunch service, and additional services (On-site registration, Secretariat services, Banking services, Travel & Tourism Assistance, and a lot more).

Our having to change the venue has meant another exciting challenge to us, and we have been doing our best to live up to the expectations of FIPLV members attending, as well as of all those coming to an FIPLV Congress for the first time.

There will be 3 general plenaries, 9 section lectures, many workshops, roundtables, paper presentation sessions, and poster sessions. Brazilian (local) culture will also be highlighted. The information flyer has just gone to the printer's with the name of the new venue, which will close down during the Congress especially for FIPLV activities. Significantly, the Federal University High School has joined us in our commitment to best meet the goals of FIPLV. May we take this opportunity to extend our warmest greetings and to wish you an eventful FIPLV year. See you soon or as we say in Brazilian Portuguese, um abrago.

Dr.Francisco Gomes de Matos and Dr. Yaracylda Farias

on behalf of the Organising Committee

The Latest on Language and Languages

A news service provided and edited by the Fédération Internationale des Professeurs de Langues Vivantes (FIPLV). The FIPLV Head Office is located at Seestrasse 247, CH-8038 Zürich, Switzerland.

FIPLV Editor: Teresa Siek-Piskozub. Editorial Office: School of English, Adam Mickiewicz University, al. Niepodleg?o?ci 4, PL-61-874 Pozna?, Poland.

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