Download An Ethnographic/sociolinguistic approach to language by Charlene Rivera PDF

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By Charlene Rivera

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Additional resources for An Ethnographic/sociolinguistic approach to language proficiency assessment

Sample text

In the area of language proficiency assessment, the political implications of how language proficiency is to be defined, and of how this definition is to be related to structural and linguistic analyses, are in fact present from the very beginning of the analysis.  158).  He emphasizes the need for a science of social interaction and of the objective interpretation of texts.  This shift would indicate that meanings need not only be relativized to scenes, as Fillmore (1976) has suggested, but that they must be seen as relative to the life situation of the actors.

Major influences on its development were Fillmore's (1979) frame semantics, Halliday & Hasan's (1976) work on cohesion, the general theoretical discussions of Hymes (1972, 1980) and others on genres and on communicative competence, Labov's (1972) analyses of narratives, and Gumperz (1976, 1977, 1981) and Cook­Gumperz's (1977) work on the negotiation of intent in natural conversation.  The improvisational nature of the creation of meaning in face­to­face talk, that has been stressed by Fred Erickson (1975) and other students of face­to­face interaction, was the focus of attention in this project.

The tapes were transcribed and the framework for analysis was used as a guide for academic descriptions.  Similarly, the researchers originally had no way of considering selection of narrative detail, or content, in the storytelling task, and later improvised a modified Propp­style (1968) analysis of the event­structure of the storybooks so that children's selection of narrative detail could be composed.  In fact, a good many of the children produced discourse that the adult examiners clearly had some difficulty in interpreting, as shown by their own awkwardness in their interactions with these children.

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