SPEAKERS 2010

The Times are a Changing: What’s Lit Got to Do with it?

The Times are a Changing: What’s Lit Got to Do with it?

Hugh Nicoll, Professor of English and American Studies, Miyazaki Municipal University

The times are, of course, always changing. The pace of those changes – technical, environmental, and demographic, to name but a commonly cited few – has increased, deepening the complexity of our lives, demanding ever greater powers of critical thinking and a high tolerance for ambiguity. Continue Reading

Teaching Creative Writing

Teaching Creative Writing

John Rippey, Associate Professor, Department of English, St. Margaret’s Junior College

Creative writing find an excellent home in foreign language writing classes, where students demonstrate natural inclinations and aptitudes for written expression of this type, as well as enjoyment, and high levels of investment, Continue Reading

Scaffolding Literature for the Japanese EFL Classroom

Scaffolding Literature for the Japanese EFL Classroom

Marcos Benevides, Lecturer, Intensive English Studies Department, Kansai Gaidai University

Western literature courses in Japanese EFL contexts suffer from important but often overlooked cultural and linguistic limitations. Schemata which are taken for granted as being readily accessible and comprehensible by English native speakers Continue Reading

Using Pop Culture to Think Critically About Global Issues

Damian Lucantonio, Associate Professor, University of Electro-Communications

This presentation will focus on how pop culture can be used to help students think critically about global issues. First, some of the key concepts of the presentation will be clarified and discussed. Continue Reading

Reconsideration of Literary Materials for Japanese University English Classes

Kazuko Takahashi, Doctor Course, The University of Tokyo Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, ex-Assistant Professor, English Department, Seinan Gakuin University

The main purpose of this paper is to reconsider the content of literary materials used in Japanese university English textbooks mainly from a practical standpoint. This paper has a tripartite structure. Continue Reading

A Place for Post-colonial Literature in the Japanese English Curriculum

A Place for Post-colonial Literature in the Japanese English Curriculum

Christine Wilby, Professor, Cornerstone College, J.F. Oberlin University

Recently Japanese universities tend to focus practical subjects considered useful for employment. This trend has led to a down sizing of literary studies that foster overall education and development, and to the prevalence of English studies programs focusing either ‘qualifications’ (TOEIC TOEFL), conversation, or simple academic English. Continue Reading

An Effective Way to Use The Great Gatsby in the Language Classroom

An Effective Way to Use The Great Gatsby in the Language Classroom

Fuyuhiko Sekido

The presenter will explain an effective way to use The Great Gatsby in the language classroom. When literature is used in the language classroom in Japan, typical Japanese teachers make learners just translate English sentences into Japanese. Continue Reading

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Speakers 2010

The Times are a Changing: What’s Lit Got to Do with it?

The Times are a Changing: What’s Lit Got to Do with it?

PLENARY TALK FROM INVITED GUEST SPEAKER
(Plenary Talk: Room A, 12-12.50)

Hugh Nicoll, Professor of English and American Studies, Miyazaki Municipal University

Abstract

The times are, of course, always changing. The pace of those changes – technical, environmental, and demographic, to name but a commonly cited few – has increased, deepening the complexity of our lives, demanding ever greater powers of critical thinking and a high tolerance for ambiguity. The practice of English education in Japan, however, where a high TOEIC score too often represents literacy and academic achievement, is being simultaneously flattened.

This “obsession with assessment . . . has arisen in a context where the purpose of education is largely taken for granted in the vocabulary of the new competitive ‘knowledge economy’ (Saito, 2005, 139).” This talk will explore Emersonian and Deweyean perspectives on education, focusing on discussions of creativity and improvisation on the part of teachers and learners within the autonomy in language learning research community. It will also, perhaps most importantly, include the voices of learners in reflecting on the main arguments offered in the manifesto issued by the conference organizers: “that literature has an essential place in the university English classroom,” and that engagement with and through art is essential for participation in “the complexities of the ‘real’ world.”

Biographical Data

Hugh Nicoll currently teaches EFL composition classes and American Studies at Miyazaki Municipal University. Born in Hackensack, New Jersey, and raised in Maine and Washington, D. C., Nicoll has been teaching in Japan since April 1983. He studied at Antioch College, Yellow Springs, Ohio, and at The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington. He was a mountaineering instructor for the National Outdoor Leadership School, and worked as a woodcutter and forest fire fighter in Washington State. He has been active in JALT for over seventeen years, and is interested in poetry, poetics, learner autonomy, and interdisciplinary approaches to the arts of teaching and learning.

Teaching Creative Writing

Teaching Creative Writing

John Rippey, Associate Professor, Department of English, St. Margaret’s Junior College

Creative writing find an excellent home in foreign language writing classes, where students demonstrate natural inclinations and aptitudes for written expression of this type, as well as enjoyment, and high levels of investment, Continue Reading

Reconsideration of Literary Materials for Japanese University English Classes

Kazuko Takahashi, Doctor Course, The University of Tokyo Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, ex-Assistant Professor, English Department, Seinan Gakuin University

The main purpose of this paper is to reconsider the content of literary materials used in Japanese university English textbooks mainly from a practical standpoint. This paper has a tripartite structure. Continue Reading

A Place for Post-colonial Literature in the Japanese English Curriculum

A Place for Post-colonial Literature in the Japanese English Curriculum

Christine Wilby, Professor, Cornerstone College, J.F. Oberlin University

Recently Japanese universities tend to focus practical subjects considered useful for employment. This trend has led to a down sizing of literary studies that foster overall education and development, and to the prevalence of English studies programs focusing either ‘qualifications’ (TOEIC TOEFL), conversation, or simple academic English. Continue Reading

The Liberlit Journal of Teaching Literature

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