Wednesday, November 25, 2009

TEML isn't

Pennycook and Coutan-Marin (2005), in an article of the same name, refer to the evangelical Christian practice of English teaching as "Teaching English as a Missionary Language." This is an inconsistent use of the TE(x)L acronym. In common usage, (x) is an adjective modifying language (think of EAL, ESL, EFL -- additional, second, and foreign, respectively) and referring to the learners' relationship to the language. TEML suggests that English is being taught for the purpose of later being used, by the learners, as a language for missionary work, which, while such a thing is possible, is not at all what Pennycook and Coutan-Marin are talking about.

I'm just saying.

PS - this article, or at least the version of it I can see online, contains a completely fake quote from George Bush about non-Christians "burning in hell." Did the authors bother to consider that if the piece they quoted was listed under "humor" on an atheist website, it might just be, you know, a joke?