Singlish in the classroom: native-speakerism and native and nonnative speaking teachers of English in Singapore

Tweedie, Maurice Gregory (2013) Singlish in the classroom: native-speakerism and native and nonnative speaking teachers of English in Singapore. [Thesis (PhD/Research)]

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The notion of ‘native-speakerism’ in the field of English Language Teaching (Holliday, 2005, 2006) involves a cultural chauvinism said to originate in prevailing Western educational culture, whereby learners and teaching associates are ‘Othered’ to stereotypical caricatures by language teachers of a sociolinguistically more dominant linguistic heritage. The discourses of nativespeakerism
assume that native speakers of a language are its authorities and arbiters and as such place ‘native speaker’ competency as a learning target. This study compared the attitudes of a sample (N = 32) of self-identified ‘native speakers’ and ‘non-native speaking’ English Language
subject teachers in Singapore toward the classroom role of a local variety of English (Colloquial Singapore English or CSE, popularly known as Singlish). Data gathered through analyses of an attitudinal questionnaire, follow-up semi-structured interviews and a document analysis study
suggested, in regards to Singlish, an apparent role reversal: while Singapore self-described ‘nonnative
speaking’ English language teachers evidenced negative views of CSE, their expatriate ‘native speaking’ counterparts asserted the legitimacy of Singlish as a language variety. These findings share some commonalities with earlier studies identified by Waters (2007b), where data gathered from ‘non-native speakers’ appeared counter-intuitive to some of the tenets of nativespeakerism.
The research suggested that the aims of government campaigns intended to foster negative attitudes toward Singlish have been effective among Singaporean English Language teachers, while the field of World Englishes, with its emphasis on pluralism in language varieties, has exerted attitudinal influence on their expatriate colleagues.

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Item Type: Thesis (PhD/Research)
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis.
Faculty/School / Institute/Centre: Historic - Faculty of Education
Supervisors: O'Neill, Shirley
Date Deposited: 09 Aug 2013 00:25
Last Modified: 18 Jul 2016 03:03
Uncontrolled Keywords: language; native-speakerism; native speakers; Singlish; Singapore; non-native speakers; english language teachers; Singapore English
Fields of Research : 20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2003 Language Studies > 200302 English Language
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130399 Specialist Studies in Education not elsewhere classified
20 Language, Communication and Culture > 2003 Language Studies > 200303 English as a Second Language
Socio-Economic Objective: C Society > 93 Education and Training > 9302 Teaching and Instruction > 930299 Teaching and Instruction not elsewhere classified

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