Providing Access: Foreign Language Learners and Genre Theory

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As methodological emphasis in intermediate-level foreign language courses has shifted from translation-based learning, which utilized literary texts quite extensively, to communication-based learning, literature in the intermediate-level course has been either overlooked as a viable tool of instruction or used in the classroom as a springboard to communication. This article argues that these approaches do not develop the students' appreciation of literature, and thus miss an opportunity for students to participate in highly motivational activities. Using the short story at the intermediate level can provide students with the opportunity to apply their knowledge of the foreign language in a way that does develop their appreciation of literature, specifically through the examination of aspects of genre theory. Genre theory and classroom-tested techniques are synthesized in the presentation of strategies for teaching selected literary characteristics of the short story at the intermediate level.

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Foreign Language Annals, v. 31, issue 1, p. 40-47