Vol 1 No 2 (2011)

An Analysis and Interpretation of Intercultural Approaches to English Language Teaching

Linda Rappel
Athabasca University
Published March 27, 2011


The aim of this paper is to examine the impact of English language teaching (ELT) with a global perspective while recognizing the role of intercultural approaches in second language instruction. Recent concerns about the influence of English as a global language and linguistic imperialism in ELT resulting from the widespread instruction and use of English as a second language for communication have initiated interest in the adoption of culture learning and the development of intercultural awareness in second language education as a way to reduce linguistic and cultural dominance by encouraging attitudes of cultural tolerance and linguistic diversity in language teaching. This paper analyzes the implications surrounding the implementation of intercultural practices in second language teaching to reduce hegemonic tendencies, reviews approaches to ELT that have roots in traditional language teaching theory reflecting a tendency toward linguistic imperialism and colonization, and suggests ways of approaching English language instruction that promote cultural tolerance, intercultural awareness and cultural diversity.