The status of ELF in Japan

Authored by: James F. D’Angelo

The Routledge Handbook of English as a Lingua Franca

Print publication date:  August  2017
Online publication date:  August  2017

Print ISBN: 9781138855328
eBook ISBN: 9781315717173
Adobe ISBN:


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The chapter begins with background information on English language attitudes and education in the Japanese context, from a historical and present-day perspective. The second part of the chapter outlines the potential value of ELF-informed views to this context, in contrast to a more traditional native speakerist-informed paradigm—primarily in societal domains. The chapter then goes on to investigate actual efforts to document and describe ELF in Japan. It looks at several research-related initiatives, including work on the Japan component of the Asia Corpus of English (ACE) project led by D’Angelo, and work underway at Waseda University under the direction of K. Murata, and touches briefly on several ELT-related efforts, both at the institutional level, and by individual professors and practitioners. The chapter considers challenges that lie ahead regarding ELF in Japan, in an attempt to evaluate the long-term impact that ELF may have on the Japanese context, especially in light of likely demographic changes in Japan’s population composition and increasing need for English in various domains. The chapter closes with a conclusion, and suggestions for further reading.

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