English as a Lingua Franca

English as a Lingua Franca
Dr Alessia Cogo
University of Southampton
In this session
 We conceptualize the spread of English
in the world (Kachru’s model)
 We explore the phenomenon of English
as a Lingua Franca
Kachru’s model
 Kachru (1992: 356)
 Most useful and influential model
 World Englishes divided into three concentric
1 Inner Circle: ENL countries, ‘norm-providing’
2 Outer Circle: ESL countries, ‘norm-developing’
3 Expanding Circle: EFL countries, ‘normdependent’
Speakers of English as a
Lingua Franca (ELF)
It has been estimated
(conservatively) that there are as
many as 2 billion speakers of English
as a second language or lingua
franca worldwide today.
(Crystal, 2008)
What is ELF?
 ELF constitutes a common means of
communication for speakers of different
first languages.
 ELF is currently the most common use of
English world-wide. Millions of speakers
from diverse cultural and linguistic
backgrounds use ELF on a daily basis,
routinely and successfully, in their
professional, academic and personal lives.
 www.univie.ac.at/voice
ELF speakers
 Gnutzmann (2000:358) ‘when used as a lingua
franca English is no longer founded on the
linguistic and sociocultural norms of native English
speakers and their respective countries and
 ELF speakers are multilingual speakers and they
draw on their multilingual repertoire in ELF
 Therefore it is the multilingual context which is key
for understanding and researching ELF.
ELF speakers
 ELF speakers = multilingual speakers
 intercultural speakers: ‘one might consider
their performance as a “third way”, a
crossing of borders, as a sign of a hybrid
culture in operation’ (House 2007:17)
 ‘third spaces offer opportunities to be
creative’ (Kelly 2009:15)
 Symbolic competence: “Social actors in
multilingual settings […] seem to display a
particularly acute ability to play with various
linguistic codes and with the various spatial
and temporal resonances of these codes”
(Kramsch & Whiteside 2008:664).
ELF: what it is
 ELF as a useful medium of communication
 ELF is not dependent on the norms of the inner
circle countries
 ELF is not necessarily geographically located
 Discuss your experience of English as a Lingua
 Have you ever experienced communication with
other non-native speakers of English? Where?
Who were the people involved?
 What have you noticed about the way they
ELF: pronunciation
Different accents used in ELF
 general attitude of acceptance of
 phenomenon of ACCOMMODATION
ELF: lexico-grammar
 use of third person present tense -0
 interchangeability of the relative
pronouns who and which
 interchangeability of definite and
indefinite articles
Different use of prepositions eg. Study
about / discuss about
ELF: pragmatics
 Increase expliciteness
 Use of translation strategies
 Use of multilingual resources
 Use of repetition and paraphrasing
 Reading to get you started…
 Cogo, A. 2010. Strategic use and perceptions of English as
a Lingua Franca. Poznań Studies in Contemporary
Linguistics. 46/3: 295-312. Available online at Versitas.
 Seidlhofer, B. 2005. “English as a lingua franca.” ELT
Journal 59: 4, 339-340. Freely available online on ELTJ
 Others:
 Jenkins, J. 2007. English as a Lingua Franca: Attitudes and
Identity. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
 Seidlhofer, B. 2011. Understanding English as a Lingua
Franca. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
 Mauranen, A.; Ranta, E. (Eds.). 2009. English as a lingua
franca: Studies and findings. Newcastle upon Tyne:
Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
 Archibald, A.; Cogo, A.; Jenkins, J. (Eds.). 2011.
Latest trends in ELF research. Newcastle on Tyne:
Cambridge Scholars Publishing.
 Jenkins, J., Cogo, A. and Dewey, M. 2011. Review
of developments in research into English as a
lingua franca. Language Teaching, 44.3, 281–315
 ELFA website.
 CGE website www.southampton.ac.uk/cge/
 VOICE website. www.univie.ac.at/voice

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