English as the language of international scholarship: Implications for the 'other'


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The emergence of English as the international language for the dissemination of knowledge is well-attested. It is ‘by far the most important language of scientific and scholarly conferences’ (Ammon 1996:260). The European Science Foundation’s working language is English and its journal Communication is exclusively in English (Ammon 1996). Over 90% of the information contained in influential databases such as the Science Citation Index (SCI) ‘is extracted from articles in English taken mostly from English language journals’ (Truchot 2002:10). It is also a time when more and more students seek a tertiary education in English and more and more universities in non-Anglophone countries seek to provide courses through the medium of English. It is surely time for us to heed Swales’ call of a decade ago that we ‘reflect soberly on Anglophone gate-keeping practices’? (Swales 1997:380). In this paper I want to consider some of the consequences of this extraordinary shift to English as the language of international scholarship and education for those for whom English is not a first language and who are thus not familiar with Anglo rhetorical styles and for the status and prestige of other, particularly Chinese, rhetorical styles.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2006



Kirkpatrick, A. (2006, November). English as the language of international scholarship: Implications for the 'other'. Paper presented at the Asia-Pacific Educational Research Association (APERA) International Conference 2006: Educational Research, Policy and Practice in an Era of Globalization, The Hong Kong Institute of Education, China.