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Bridging the Humor Barrier

Humor Competency Training in English Language Teaching
Table of
The language barrier is a familiar term, but what exactly is the humor barrier? Humor is a universal phenomenon, but the cultural variance in how humor is used can prove to be a major obstacle for English language learners hoping to communicate effectively in cross-cultural contexts. While a growing number of researchers have explored the importance of helping language learners better understand the humor of the target culture, in Bridging the Humor Barrier: Humor Competency Training in English Language Teaching, editors John Rucynski Jr. and Caleb Prichard bring together language teachers and researchers from a range of cultural and teaching contexts to tackle how to actually overcome the humor barrier. This book empirically examines humor competency training and presents related research bearing implications for humor training. Contributors address a wide range of genres of humor, providing fresh insights into helping language learners deepen their understanding and appreciation of the humor of the English-speaking world, including jokes, sarcasm, and satire. This book is an excellent resource for English language teachers looking to help their learners avoid the pitfalls and reap the benefits of humor in the target language.
John Rucynski Jr. is associate professor in the Center for Liberal Arts and Language Education at Okayama University. Caleb Prichard is associate professor in the Center for Liberal Arts and Language Education at Okayama University.
Introduction John Rucynski Jr. and Caleb Prichard Part 1: Humor Competence Development Outside the Class Chapter 1:"Working Backwards from Funny: Preparing Language Learners to Use Humor in Intercultural Encounters" Anne Pomerantz Chapter 2:"Humor Competency: The Role of Sociopragmatic Knowledge in Expressions of Humor in Intercultural Interactions" Jules Winchester Chapter 3:"Feeling Inadequate: Lessons from Cross-Cultural Adaptation to Help Learners Get over Inadequacies in Humor Competency" Maria Ramirez de Arellano Part 2: Integrated Humor Instruction Chapter 4:"Humor-Integrated Language Learning (HILL): Teaching with and about Humor" Mohammad Ali Heidari-Shahreza Chapter 5:"Junior High English Textbook Interactional Humor: Pragmatic Possibilities" Scott Gardner Chapter 6:"Reading Jokes in English: How English Language Learners Appreciate and Comprehend Humor" Nadezda Pimenova Part 3: Explicit Humor Competency Training Chapter 7:"Humor Competency Training for Sarcasm and Jocularity" Caleb Prichard and John Rucynski Jr. Chapter 8:"Theory, Content Knowledge, Input, Output: Elements in the Teaching and Learning of Humor Competence" Richard Hodson Chapter 9:"Using Diaries to Research and Develop Humor Competence in a Second Language" Maria Petkova Chapter 10:"Training English Language Learners to Recognize English Satirical News" John Rucynski Jr. and Caleb Prichard
Highly recommended not only for researchers and students working on language teaching, linguistics, pragmatics, and intercultural communication, but also for language teachers who could be inspired and motivated by the different approaches included therein. * The European Journal of Humour Research * In Bridging the Humor Barrier, readers can find a comprehensive introduction into teaching about humor in their classrooms and providing their students the skills they need in order to understand and produce their own humorous conversations. In addition, its articles and plethora of sources used throughout the text serves as a solid jumping point for those who wish to delve into researching further into the topic. It balances this research well with practical guidelines and suggestions, resulting in a well-rounded text that would be a welcome addition in any language educator's collection. This text should be of interest to all language educators, as well as educators at large who wish to incorporate culturally literate, culturally sensitive humor into their teaching practices. * Kobe JALT Journal * "As our world is becoming more divided between the conservatives and the progressives, we need a tool to help us all see the common ground. Humor, language play, satire, sarcasm, irony, and parody all require people to see an issue from more than a single perspective. Bridging the Humor Barrior is a perfect tool for allowing advanced English learners around the world not only to develop sophisticated English language skills, but also to better understand cultural and political differences." -- Don Nilsen, Arizona State University "I found the book to be an original contribution that belongs in the library of all humor scholars interested in the intersection of teaching English in an intercultural setting and humor. It is a very rich collection of articles, with a wide breadth of methodologies and goals, which fills a significant gap in the literature." -- Salvatore Attardo, Texas A&M University
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