K-pop, coffee, and air-con : The unsettling ingredients of a language related episode in EMI China

Research output: Conference Papers (RGC: 31A, 31B, 32, 33)32_Refereed conference paper (no ISBN/ISSN)peer-review

View graph of relations

Author(s)

Related Research Unit(s)

Detail(s)

Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2021

Conference

TitleSociolinguistics Symposium 23
LocationVirtual, The University of Hong Kong
PlaceChina
CityHong Kong
Period7 - 10 June 2021

Abstract

Note: This was part of the colloquium. “Problematizing Language Policy and Practice in EMI and Transnational Higher Education: International Perspectives.” It is the first of six colloquium papers.
Taking a critical, ecological and posthuman approach to Transnational Higher Education, this paper visits the campus of a British university in China and, through a single case analysis, examines how a group of students negotiate a language related episode. The goal is to illustrate the relational and more-than-human networks (or assemblages) within which such a mundane episode can become embedded. 
Language related episodes are critical moments in classroom interaction that involve collaborative dialogue and assisted performance, having long been recognised as rich moments in which students contribute various forms of competence to negotiating linguistic understanding (Swain & Lapkin, 1998; Williams, 1999; Ohta, 2001; Author et al., 2018).The actual mechanics of the language related episode in question (selected from the Multimodal Corpus of Chinese Academic Written and Spoken English) have been analysed in detail with a combination of gesture studies and multimodal interaction (Author, 2018; Mondada, 2016), and accordingly, we will show how the successful resolution of the episode depends on “the embodied way in which people communicate and gather together, as well as the ecology of the activities they engage in, and their material and spatial environment” (p. 337). It is upon encountering the embodied, material, spatial, and other phenomenal qualities of this episode’s environment that the paper takes a more critical and posthuman turn (also drawing insights from a retrospective participant interview). 
The intersection of a student’s Korean-pop dance move, Starbucks coffee cup, and Mandarin Chinese speech with the teacher’s repeated directives for the group to only speak “English please” creates a more-than-human assemblage, shifting our perspective to an object-oriented and relational ontology (Pennycook, 2017). Using a dolly zoom or contextualising backtrack (Authors, forthcoming), we situate the contours and operations of this assemblage in relation to the environment of this British campus in China specifically, and to the broader horizon and changing picture of transnational higher education more generally.

Research Area(s)

  • EMI, Transnational higher education, Language Policy, Monolingual ideologies, Policy negotiation

Bibliographic Note

Research Unit(s) information for this publication is provided by the author(s) concerned.

Citation Format(s)

K-pop, coffee, and air-con : The unsettling ingredients of a language related episode in EMI China. / Harrison, Simon; Fleming, David; Chen, Yu-Hua.

2021. Paper presented at Sociolinguistics Symposium 23, Hong Kong, China.

Research output: Conference Papers (RGC: 31A, 31B, 32, 33)32_Refereed conference paper (no ISBN/ISSN)peer-review