Subject matter in Hong Kong primary English classrooms: A critical analysis of teacher talk

An E HE

Research output: Contribution to journalArticles

Abstract

Studies of language issues in postcolonial Hong Kong are abundant. While the majority is concerned with the language policy and medium of instruction, there seems to be insufficient discussion on the subject matter of our English lessons, which, this paper argues, are ideology-ridden. Following the tradition of critical discourse analysis and ideological studies (see van Dijk, 2005; Luke, 1994), this study attempted to explore how a habitual form of communication, teacher talk in this case, was utilized as a vehicle for young children to "[learn] the taken-for-granted aspects of lived reality" (Hasan, 1996, p. 137), and what attributed to the creation, transmission and maintenance of this dominant culture/ideology in the society, resulting in narrowly-defined subject matter for the young children in the classrooms observed. The study started with a description of lexicosyntactic items in the teacher talk via a corpus approach, and moved to an interpretation/explanation of the linguistic texts in the light of the overall sociopolitical and cultural context in Hong Kong where the teacher talk was situated. Copyright © 2006 Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)169-188
JournalCritical Inquiry in Language Studies
Volume3
Issue number2-3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Citation

He, A. (2006). Subject matter in Hong Kong primary English classrooms: A critical analysis of teacher talk. Critical Inquiry in Language Studies, 3(2-3), 169-188. doi: 10.1080/15427587.2006.9650845

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