This paper explores possibilities of using language learning autobiographies as a form of identity texts in order to produce suggestions for critical teacher education. Specifically, we examined what insights we might gain by reframing Korean pre-service teachers’ autobiographies as a form of identity texts to develop reflective teachers, who affirm their identities and language learning histories. We thematically analyzed autobiographical reflection papers on English learning experiences of 73 undergraduate students enrolled in a compulsory elementary English education course at a public university in South Korea. The analysis revealed the predominance of referral to English private education experiences and a sense of linguistic insecurity felt by these pre-service teachers, who would later teach in public schools. Based on these findings, we provide suggestions for critical teacher education to foster critical language awareness and identity investment for the students. We conclude that language learning autobiographies, while incorporating characteristics of identity texts, might be a useful tool for critical pedagogies.
This paper discusses ways to understand and cope with the issues of holism, generalizability, and representativity in qualitative research. More specifically, the article argues that critical sociolinguistic ethnography can serve as a useful methodological tool to uncover complicated processes and consequences of linguistic practice in social life in an increasingly globalized world. Drawing on Heller’s (2011) framework of critical sociolinguistic ethnography, the analysis underscores how critical sociolinguistics focuses on the analysis of the processes by which social actors access and mobilize valuable linguistic resources across time and space. The paper illustrates the situated research processes of doing critical sociolinguistic ethnography through two research projects on South Korean transnational English learners conducted by the authors. The article concludes with a discussion of how critical sociolinguistic ethnography may contribute to broadening research agenda in sociolinguistics in the era of globalization.
Jang, In Chull & Yang, In Young. 2018. “Linguistic Representations of Korean Immigrant English in North American Media Space: An Analysis of Appa's English in Kim's Convenience”. The Sociolinguistic Journal of Korea 26(2), 1~36. With the increasing importance of the mass media in social life and the linguistic changes it incurs, sociolinguistic research on linguistic representations in cinematic discourse has been increasing recently. Situated within this growing body of emerging scholarship in sociolinguistics, this study examines how Korean immigrant English is represented in a Canadian TV sitcom, Kim’s Convenience. Drawing on the perspective that linguistic performances in fictional discourse serve as resources for sociolinguistic styling and characterization, this paper investigates how the linguistic representations of Korean immigrant English contribute to authenticating the character of a middle-aged male Korean immigrant called Appa in the TV series. For this purpose, Appa's English used throughout the TV series' first season (13 episodes) was analyzed at the phonological, syntactic, lexical, thematic, and semiotic levels. The analysis revealed that each linguistic level shows distinct but concerted efforts regarding the authentication of Appa as a Korean immigrant. The phonological features of his English effectively share those of Korean English, whereas the syntactic representations are characteristic of a simple register. The lexical, thematic, and semiotic representations additionally reinforce Appa's “Koreanness” through the sitcom's integration of topics and images related to Korean culture.
Jang, In Chull. 2017. “Mobilizing K-pop in interethnic relationship and interaction: A case of study abroad students”. The sociolinguistic Journal of Korea 25(3). 199~229. This paper attempts to engage in the body of Hallyu research through a sociolinguistic lens. As a case of analysis, it explores the ways in which the Korean Wave shapes the process of relationship building between South Korean and other ethnic students during their overseas stay. Drawing data from an ethnographic fieldwork of international language learners studying English abroad, the paper reports that, with the global popularity of Hallyu, K-pop serves as an interactional resource in intercultural communication. In particular, Korean students find that it helps them to build friendships with Latin American students, whom they perceive as culturally distinctive interlocutors. The following analysis of interactions between one Brazilian and two Korean male students in a leisurely activity shows that the Korean students are positioned as authentic bearers of K-pop culture in social interactions. In addition, the international students share evaluations of K-pop stars and songs, and stage performances of singing and dancing together, thus leading to jocular and light-hearted atmospheres. However, it suggests that as their K-pop talks involve gendered images and representations of female idol stars, their interactions lead to reproducing “sexy” and “cute” images of K-pop femininity.
This study explores ideologies of English that came into play when two different schools, Yugyŏng kongwŏn and Paichai School, were established in Korea in the late 19th century, a period in which a modern kind of English education was initially demanded and formed in the history of modern Korea. Drawing upon language ideology from linguistic anthropology as a theoretical framework, this study analyzes primary and secondary sources of relevant historical documents. This paper argues that the discursive condition that led to the necessity of English education in late 19th Korea was concerned with Munmyong kaehwa, a discourse that the cultural elite called the Kaehwa party introduced and supported to create a modern type of nationalism in Korea. Perceiving English as a language for civilization and enlightenment, this elite group contributed to building the two schools. On the other hand, common Koreans tried to enter these schools simply to learn English, believing that English would serve their individual success. This narrative shows that although the two ideologies of English, that is English for civilization and English for success, were coexisting in the late 19th century, the social discourse of Munmyong Kaehwa was not fully indexed with the ideologies of English.