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ERIC Number: ED159890
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1978
Reference Count: 0
The Image of Present Day American Society in English Language Textbooks Used in Germany. Didaktischer Brief, No. 76.
James, Charles J.
An analysis is presented of nine textbooks that have been developed in Germany for English language instruction in secondary schools. The purpose of the study is to describe the view that Germans appear to have of the United States as reflected in the information and opinions expressed in these textbooks. It is noted that all the textbooks introduce students to English by way of British English and society, a precondition that automatically slants what is said about the United States. Three aspects of the question are discussed in detail: (1) the geography of the U.S.; (2) the people and ethnic groups; and (3) the language of Americans and the approach to American English. With regard to geography, the impression is given that the United States is a very large, vaguely defined country with a few cities and vast stretches of land in between them. Regarding people, it is found that the factual information is often overly concerned with touristic curiosities or racial minorities. Finally, the treatment of language is considered generally satisfactory, except for a few misrepresentations of American English pronunciation and spelling. A discussion in the form of answers to questions from English teachers in Germany concludes the paper. (AMH)
Descriptors: American Culture, American History, Cultural Education, Cultural Images, English (Second Language), Ethnic Groups, Geographic Regions, Geography, Human Geography, Language Instruction, Language Programs, Minority Groups, North American English, Pronunciation, Second Language Learning, Secondary Education, Sociocultural Patterns, Spelling, Stereotypes, Textbook Bias, Textbook Content, Textbook Evaluation, Textbook Research, Textbooks, Tourism
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: English Language Textbooks; West Germany