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(Re)placing Literary Texts in the Intercultural Foreign Language Classroom

Author(s): Ana Gonçalves Matos

Journal: International Education Studies
ISSN 1913-9020

Volume: 4;
Issue: 5;
Date: 2011;
Original page

In the history of language teaching, literary texts have gradually been reduced to a source for linguistic learning, as an informative representation of cultural traits or even dismissed from the foreign language classroom. This paper aims to add reasons that justify considering literary texts a vital presence in the foreign language classroom. One general aim is to promote the study of foreign literature as enjoyable and (inter)culturally significant.The classroom is inevitably a culturally heterogeneous setting since its elements are already socialized subjects. Instead of its limiting role of supplying knowledge, the classroom ought to foster reading critically through a pedagogy of questioning the text, searching for and building textual meaning. Teaching literature in a foreign language should underline how literature offers new perspectives and how these views are directly relevant to the world we live in and the lives we lead.
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