Speaking Anxiety and Learner’s Own Variety of English
Shafinaz Sikder and Mohammad Mahmudul Haque
Abstract: In this increasingly globalized world, English is the most widely used international contact language as it has spread to different parts of the world. Due to its wide use by speakers of many different languages, English has been influenced by many different factors including diverse ways of pronunciation. Therefore, it is not surprising that such pronunciation varieties have obvious classroom implications, especially among the nonnative teaching-learning communities. In most contexts, the nonnative teacher-learners are under pressure to conform to any of the native varieties, which, this paper argues, isresponsible for creating language anxiety among the learners. Reviewing selected works by Crystal, Bolton, Canagarajah, Farooqui, Jenkins, and Sharifian’s that address the way “power,”“hegemony,” and “politics” operate behind the promotion of such native varieties, the present paper probes into the relationship between speaking anxiety and the enforced native varieties on the nonnative ones of English. It concludes that there is little rationale behind such enforcement as English is increasingly becoming a contact language, which enables the nonnative speakers of English to equally own the language as their native counterparts. It also suggests that promotion of the nonnative varieties in language classes will encourage the learners to use the language from their own comfort zone, and will eventually decrease their speaking anxiety.
View Full Text
Published in 2016