2 thoughts on “What is Literature?…Why Applied Literature?…

  1. The following article quoted here conceptualises Applied Literature in a coherent way…hopefully, it would be useful for the learners:

    Applied literature is used in (usually foreign) language education; this method uses selected texts or textual excerpts in an original language to reinforce a cultural normative use of the language of study.

    Three approaches are outlined in “Approaches to using literature with the language learner”: a language-based approach, wherein “studying the language of the literary text” allows for deeper stylistic knowledge of the target language (Lazar 23); a literature-as-content approach, wherein the historical and cultural background of a text give the content a solid base from which language use and understanding may improve (Lazar 24); and a literature-for-personal-enrichment approach, wherein the student is encouraged to draw on personal experience, stemming from reactions to the text, to become “more actively involved both intellectually and emotionally in learning” the target language (Lazar 24).

    These approaches all merge the learning of a target language with close analyses of how that language is used in an original context. This allows an instructor to move beyond a traditional repetitive memorization approach to language instruction toward the student’s acquiring of a deeper understanding of the historical, political, and cultural uses of the target language. ‘Text,’ in this case, is a term applied to any suitable form of media: fiction, current events, film, music, etc.

    Lazar, Gillian. “Approaches to using literature with the language learner”. Literature and Language Teaching: A Guide for Teachers and Trainers. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1993.

    Suggestions for further reading (taken from Lazar)
    Brumfit, C. (ed.) (1983) ‘Teaching Literature Overseas: Language-Based Approaches’, ELT Documents, 115.
    Brumfit, C. J. and Carter, R. A. (eds.) (1986) Literature and Language Teaching.
    Brumfit, C., Carter, R., and Walker, R. (eds.) (1989) ‘Literature and the Learner: Methodological Approaches’ ELT Documents, No. 130.
    Carter, R. (ed.) (1982) Language and Literature: An Introductory Reader in Stylistics.
    Carter, R. and Burton, D. (eds.) (1982) Literary Text and Language Study.
    Carter, R. and Long, M. (1991) Teaching Literature, Chapter 4.
    Holden, S. (ed.) (1988) ‘Literature and Language’.
    Widdowson, H. G. (1974) ‘Stylistics’ in Corder, S. P. and Allen, J. P. B. The Edinburgh Course in Applied Linguistics, 3.
    Widdowson, H. G. (1975) Stylistics and the Teaching of Literature.

    URL: http://wikis.la.utexas.edu/theory/page/applied-literature

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