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ERIC Number: EJ905511
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Dec
Pages: 27
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 48
ISSN: ISSN-0039-8322
Globalization and Language Learning in Rural Japan: The Role of English in the Local Linguistic Ecology
Kubota, Ryuko; McKay, Sandra
TESOL Quarterly: A Journal for Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages and of Standard English as a Second Dialect, v43 n4 p593-619 Dec 2009
Drawing on a study of current language use in a rural community in Japan, we question to what extent English actually does serve today as a lingua franca in multilingual, internationally diverse communities. Specifically, we report on a critical ethnography of a small Japanese community with a growing number of non-English-speaking immigrants, largely from Brazil but also from China, Peru, Korea, and Thailand. We investigate how people in the community view and engage in local linguistic diversity and how this is related to their subjectivities and to their experiences in learning and using English. We analyzed the public report of a community survey on diversity conducted by the city and interviewed three Japanese volunteer leaders who are teachers and learners of English and two Japanese who study Portuguese in order to support the local Brazilian migrant workers. Based on our findings, we highlight four emergent themes that provide insights into the significance of learning English in a linguistically diverse context. We also discuss the pedagogical implications of the local linguistic ecology for the teaching and learning of English. (Contains 5 footnotes.)
Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages, Inc. 1925 Ballenger Avenue Suite 550, Alexandria, VA 22314. Tel: 888-547-3369; Tel: 703-836-0774; Fax: 703-836-7864; Fax: 703-836-6447; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Japan