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  • 1.
    Furi, Arian
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A Corpus-Based Study of the Use of Modal Verbs in Online News Comments2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The present study investigates the use of modal auxiliary verbs in online news comments (YNACC) relative to spoken interaction (SBCSAE) and three written registers (COCA). The central research question that is addressed in the present study is the extent to which the frequency and distribution of modal and semi-modal auxiliary verbs in the register of online news comments are different from those of the spoken and the written registers. The findings of this study indicate that online news comments exhibit higher frequencies of central modal auxiliaries in comparison to spoken interaction and the written registers, not only in regard to the overall distribution of the central modals, but also in regard to the individual distribution of the frequently used will, can, would, and especially should. The findings of this study also indicate that online news comments seem to have adopted the use of semi-modal auxiliaries such as have to and want to from spoken interaction to a much larger extent than the written registers, but that there is no evidence indicating that reductions (i.e. “gonna”, “wanna”, and “gotta”) are in the process of being adopted. The present study is able to demonstrate that there are a number of significant variations in the overall frequency and distribution of the modal and semi-modal auxiliary verbs. 

  • 2.
    Gontevas, Maria
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A Linguistic Symphony: An investigetion on the link between musicality and Englsih L2 vocabulary learning in upper secondary school2018Independent thesis Basic level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Previously there has been much research on the effects that music has on the brain and  how music can be used as a tool in L1 acquisition for children as well as L2 learning for adults (Miyake & Sleve 2006, Schellenberg, 2004, Miendlarzewska & Wiebke, 2014). However, the aim with this essay is to investigate whether there is a link between musical abilities and English L2 vocabulary learning and also to examine whether there is a relation between musical training for children and English vocabulary learning in upper secondary school. The study will compare the vocabulary learning to students who play video games or watch English tv shows or films two or more hours per week. The study was conducted on students from two different classes with different specializations. One class had music as its specialization and the other class engineering. The students were provided with a background questionnaire to be able to determine the musical abilities of the students and whether the students had been musically trained as children. Then the students were taught 20 English words which were later at the same occasion put in a vocabulary test. The results showed that the individuals with musical abilities had slightly better scores than the total average score through all categories; however, the results of the students who had had musical training as children showed an even greater difference in the efficiency of L2 English vocabulary learning as those students showed even higher scores on the English vocabulary test. The results of the examination thereby suggest that musical training on children facilitates English L2 vocabulary learning.

  • 3.
    Xerri, Sabrina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A piece of cake? High school students' retention of idioms: A comparative study of teaching idioms by means of illustrations and definitions respectively2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This study aims at investigating teaching of idioms by means of illustrations and teaching of idioms by means of definitions. The informants of the experiment are learners of English in a Swedish high school. The 58 informants of this experiment were tested on a total of 19 idioms. These idioms were carefully chosen in order to make sure that they would not already be known by the informants. Another key factor while choosing the idioms was the possibility to find appropriate illustrations for these idioms. The chosen illustrations depict either the literal or the metaphorical meaning of the idioms. The informants were administered one pre-test and two post-tests (short- and long-term retention tests) to measure the retention rate. The pre-test was used to check if both groups had similar knowledge of the selected idioms and therefore could be comparable. The results of this experiment show that students taught by the use of illustrations had a better short- and long-term retention rate than students taught only by the use of definitions. In both the short- and long-term retention test, informants taught by the use of illustrations outperformed informants taught through definition by more than 10%. This study therefore indicates that the use of illustrations while teaching should not be neglected by teachers and can be a powerful tool to enhance students’ retention of chosen items such as vocabulary or idioms.

  • 4.
    Kalev, Jaana
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A Sociophonetic Analysis of the Role of Cultural Identification in L2 English Speech Production2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Research in the relationship between second language (L2) production and study abroad has largely focused on establishing a connection between exchange studies and the success rate of second language acquisition. This Bachelor's thesis investigates L2 production by studying L2 English speakers' attitudes regarding the target language culture in relation to their production of a regionally typical phoneme by formulating the research question “How does cultural identification with the target language environment influence L2 phonetic production in the L1 language community?” in hopes of contributing to sociophonetic studies. This is done by conducting a qualitative study based on the phonetic production of rhoticity and the experiences of nine Swedish former exchange students to the United States. The study draws on existing research that highlights the saliency of rhoticity, as well as provides insight into the importance of identity in language use and into the relevance of motivation and the establishing of social networks for L2 gains during study abroad. To provide a framework for understanding these issues, the Social Network Strength Scale is applied. The results and data analysis suggest that, opposite to expectation, there is no clear relationship between cultural identification and L2 phonetic production for speakers who are no longer immersed into the L2 environment. However, the results establish a possible connection between maintaining a dense social network with native speaker members of the L2 community, as well as of having an awareness and capacity to understand the L2 culture, and a higher percentage of phonetic production of sounds typical for the L2 environment.

  • 5.
    Asghari, Parastoo
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Ambiguity in Peace Agreements: Cognitive and Computational Models for Processing Syntactic Ambiguity in Israeli-Palestinian Peace Agreements in English2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 80 credits / 120 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Systems that attempt to process texts and acquire information from texts in English need to be particularly alert to noun phrases since they carry so much information. Systems, whether comprehensional or computational, may face particular difficulties when dealing with complex noun phrases. One of the decomposition patterns for noun phrases is left or right branching, which determines the semantic relations between the constituents of the combination.This degree project seeks to describe a processing model that the comprehension system employs to process difficulties. Since the minicorpus studied in this research consists of four of the peace agreements that were produced in English for Israeli and Palestinian sides of their conflicts to sign and implement, the comprehension models that were used by a non-native speaker of English are described, and then a computational model to enhance performing this task is suggested which includes using the frequencies of the combinations of the constituents in two major contemporary corpora, the Corpus of Contemporary American English and the British National Corpus, to help decide how to nest the noun phrases as either left or right branching structures, to resolve the ambiguity problem. Hyphening is also suggested as a potential strategy to avoid unwanted structural ambiguity in adjective + noun + noun combinations.

  • 6.
    Cedermark, Daniella
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Appropriately Provocative Texts in the Classroom: An Act of Violation or a Tool for Democracy?2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Reading any kind of literature evokes emotions, introduces new experiences and

    benefits the understanding of a person’s individual reaction. However, if the purpose

    for the reading is to locate facts, such as identifying a theme, the reading

    experience could result in discouraging reading. The Swedish curriculum for

    uppersecondary school tends to focus on identifying traits of texts, instead of

    offering the students to

    emotionally connect with the text through previous personal experiences and

    interpretations, which would be beneficial for developing critical thinking. This

    challenges the notion that reading any kind of literature is an all-positive

    experience.

    Using Rosenblatt’s reader response-theory, I analyse the myth of literature as

    morally beneficial, which refers to the assumption that the readers of a literary work

    of art automatically gains moral values through the reading of literature. By

    investigating how different literary works could be used, perceived and categorized

    based on their appropriateness for classroom readings, this essay examines how the

    criteria of appropriateness can be problematic. Further, this essay assesses how

    provocative texts could be used for teaching democratic values. The analysis uses The

    Handmaid’s Tale, The Camp of the Saints and The Turner Diaries as literary

    examples in order to compare texts that have, and have not been challenged, critiqued

    and banned in high schools for different purposes, such as racism, feminism and for

    being anti-Christian.

  • 7.
    Yiu, Man Ting
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “Are We What We Eat?” Negotiating Identities Through Cuisine and Consumption: A Thing Theory Approach to Alison Wong’s As The Earth Turns Silver2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 80 credits / 120 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Culinary narratives are frequently employed to portray migrant identities and societies in Asian diaspora literature This thesis examines cuisine and consumption in Alison Wong’s As The Earth Turns Silver by highlighting the socio-political linkages between material culture and ethnic identity formation of Chinese migrants in New Zealand. Using Brown’s thing theory, food is reframed as site of meaningful discourse to interrogate the role of cuisine and consumption in mediating the migrant experience. It demonstrates the material and cultural importance of food in facilitating ethnic and political identification, transcultural exchange, and independence for frequently oppressed migrant individuals in diaspora literature.  Conversely, food functions as vectors of aggression in racialising the ethnic other by communicating artificial notions of morality, national identity, and purity to reinforce the hegemony. Additionally, culinary objects facilitate how characters articulate their dislocation and fragmentation as hybrid individuals. Finally, I undertake a craft analysis of Wong’s novel by drawing connections between Wong’s hybridity and her narrative design. I use thing theory to demonstrate how characters use culinary objects to negotiate hybridity while the application of transference technique reveals the way material objects are embedded with abstract emotions to communicate writer and character ethnic subjectivity. Findings from the critical analysis are applied to my short story collection Raw. Thing theory provides the theoretical framework for the practical application of transference in my creative thesis, demonstrating its efficacy in improving craft. The creative thesis demonstrates the applicability of theory in creative practice. Finally, it offers an analytical framework for contextualising food as a site of discourse for hybridized identity politics in diaspora literary criticism.

  • 8.
    Bergström, Josefine
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Attitudes towards English in post-Brexit referendum Germany:  A qualitative study on attitudes towards English as experienced by British expats in Germany2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    English today has reached global dimensions no other language has reached before. While there are other lingua francas in certain geographical regions in the world, English is the most dominant lingua franca in many important international domains, including international affairs and its use as the lingua franca of official organisations, such as the European Union (EU).

     

    In the wake of the result of the British referendum, voices were raised for the discontinuation of the use of the English language within the EU after Brexit. While this topic has received attention from journalists throughout Europe, to date there are very few studies on attitudes towards English in a post-Brexit referendum Europe. The present study aims to contribute to the filling of this gap by investigating attitudes towards English experienced by British expats living in Germany, employing semi-structured interviews with six British expats. Also included in the study is information about the expats’ use of different languages for different purposes. The findings indicate that i) they do not see the emergence of a Euro-English likely; ii) that their language choices are determined by inclusiveness; iii) that there may be different attitudes towards English in different parts of Germany; iv) that English is experienced as a door opener; and finally, v) multilingualism is a desired notion for them all. Combined, they suggest there is a discrepancy between the EU political line and the grass root reality. 

  • 9.
    Öberg, Marcus
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Belief and Religion in Terry Pratchett’s The Hogfather2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    Being widely known as comedy fantasy, Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series has been highly regarded by fans and critics alike. While known for their comic tone, Pratchett’s novels have also dealt with grave topics, such as the power of belief and the notion that gods are created, destroyed and made relevant through belief and worship. Yet, there is a distinct gap in academic literature investigating Pratchett’s ideas concerning the nature of both belief and religion. Although Amanda Cockrell has touched upon similar subjects, this paper will address the nature of belief and religion in the Discworld further, by focusing on the novel The Hogfather. I argue that The Hogfather suggests humans are capable of giving meaning to the world around them through the power of belief, and that religion is created by humans to make the world around them more meaningful. In Pratchett’s Discworld, humans have created gods to make sense of what they cannot understand and in this way, they try to bring meaning to the world around them. Furthermore, I argue that The Hogfather presents a case for the importance of religious belief in a modern, secularised world. By presenting “Hogswatch”—the Discworld equivalent of Christmas—as a satire of belief and tradition, Pratchett suggests that, in the end, both secular and religious worldviews should co-exist.

  • 10.
    Graham, Robert
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Codeswitching from L1 to L2 in group work by teenagers: An investigation of codeswitching from Swedish to English in student group-work discussions by learners of English in 9th grade at a upper primary school in Sweden2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The aim of this paper was to perform an investigation into instances of codeswitching by Swedish teenagers from L1 Swedish to L2 English in student group-work discussions. The specific focus of the investigation were the instances of codeswitching which were performed as a demonstration of personal expression on the part of the speaker. It was the goal of this research to analyse such examples of codeswitching and attempt to create an understanding of the underlying mechanisms that drive this type of communication.  The study took place at an upper primary school in Sweden.  Data was collected through the recording of two group discussions. The group discussions were framed and recorded as part of an English language lesson in grade 9. Four student interviews were also performed. The results of the data analysis indicated that Swedish teenagers codeswitch from Swedish to English in group discussions quite frequently. The students expressed that they codeswitch to English in this manner as way of communicating with each other in a way that is generally agreed to be “cool” and “fun”. They also do this to display their own proficiency in the language. Proficiency in English is perceived to be a desirable attribute. The conclusion of the study is that codeswitching of this type is an important part of this group’s language use in terms of how the social relationships are expressed and maintained. A secondary result of this behaviour is that it appears to be a positive driver of oral English language skills.

  • 11.
    Stefan, Catalina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Death and the Victorian Child: The Fetishising of Death and Mourning in Dickens' David Copperfield and Pater's "The Child in the House"2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Named after a queen who spent most of her life in deep mourning, the Victorian era was a time characterised by new-found economic affluence and important advances in medicine and sanitation. Despite this, rates of child mortality remained stubbornly high. This resulted in a culture obsessed with mourning, but also with children, as the loss of a child was much more woeful than the loss of the elderly, or even the adult person. Within this cultural framework, the child that survives and thus gets to experience mourning and bereavement becomes an important locus for understanding Victorian-specific mourning and reactions to bereavement. The specific psychology of the child permits a unique perspective on death, as it is less tainted by the layered experience of adulthood and also bound to the child's level of development at the time of their experience with death. Do to the latter, Dr. Mark Speece's psychological study on the child's understanding of death will be applied to the characters discussed.

    The titular character of Charles Dickens' David Copperfield, as well as the eponymous child in Walter Horatio Pater's highly autobiographical "The Child in the House" offer two very opposite perspectives on death - the realist, socially-infused view as opposed to the aesthetic, consummately individualistic. Using a primary Freudian psychoanalytical lens, we have found that despite the different approaches, both Dickens and Pater end up using the child's perspective to deliver a fetishised view of death and mourning.

  • 12.
    Fois, Daniela
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Disability Bias and the Misrepresentation of Chronic Illness and Invisible Disability in Contemporary YA Fiction2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Despite the success illness novels have acquired in the last decade, the misrepresentation of chronic illness in the Young Adult genre is still going unnoticed. In an ableist society that still needs to be educated about invisible disabilities, most of the contemporary YA writers insist on finding miraculous solutions and questionable happy endings to their stories. The aim of this thesis is therefore to study the different ways in which YA writers fetishize and understate invisible disability and to find a way to subvert it.

    By focusing on the miracle cure trope and romanticization in the case of Nicola Yoon’s Everything Everything, it attempts to highlight the characteristics of low-quality disability fiction and demonstrate why and how the use of disability biases can affect negatively both disabled and nondisabled young readers. In addition, through the scrutiny of the author’s first YA novel, Nothing Wrong with Snails, it then illustrates how the in-depth analysis of past disability literature improved the author’s personal craft and enabled them to portray chronic illness and invisible disability avoiding stereotypes, biases, and tropes. In conclusion, it argues that writers ought to rely on disability studies in order to reach higher standards in the representation of invisible disability in YA fiction.

  • 13.
    Röde, Silja
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    English as a lingua franca in political talk: The use of self-repair and repetition as clarification strategies in political interviews with Jean-Claude Juncker2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This study investigates the use of two communicative strategies in particular, namely self- repair and repetition, in political interviews with Jean-Claude Juncker where English is used as a lingua franca (ELF). While ELF has received increasing attention throughout the past years, with a variety of researched genres ranging from higher education (e.g. Björkman 2011; Kaur 2011; Mauranen 2006) and business (Bjørge 2010; Firth 1996; Ehrenreich 2009; Pullin Stark 2009) to domestic settings (e.g. Klötzl 2014; Pietikäinen 2014), the genre of political interviews remains largely under-researched – despite it being such a highly international and high-stakes domain. Therefore, the aim of the present research is to include this domain to the list of researched genres, and thereby to gain a better understanding of how a politician uses ELF in his official role. The data comprises four interviews with the president of the EU-commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, with a total interview-time of 35 minutes. The interviews have been transcribed in their entirety for the purpose of the present study, and the data was analysed drawing on conversation analytic approaches. Both self-repair and repetition were frequently identified as clarification strategies in the data and their functions comply to a large extent with previous findings from ELF research (e.g. Kaur 2011; Lichtkoppler 2007; Mauranen 2006). Repetition was found to be used as a strategy to specify utterances and ensure understanding and self-repair to either right the wrongs or raise explicitness. In addition to that, the use of repetition showed some interview-genre related functions as well, such as the use of repetition to influence and interrupt the regular turn-taking structure of interviews. This study shows that the use of ELF is in fact to a certain extent different in political interviews than in other researched genres, and therefore suggests that further studies within this genre would significantly contribute to the field of research into ELF.

  • 14.
    Dandache, Rayan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    English borrowings on South Korean TV: A study of how English borrowings are utilized in South Korean television programs2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    English has been utilized as a donor language for lexical borrowing of loanwords for a long time, by many different languages. One of those languages is Korean: and despite the importance of the English influence on the Korean language, few have researched what word class the loanwords within the language belong to and if the lexical borrowing goes through any changes. The purpose of the present study was to establish what type of lexical borrowings occur in Korean television programs and what processes the lexical borrowings go through before settling within the borrowing language and how these results would relate to studies in other languages. The results showed a strong tendency for English nouns to be borrowed regardless of the genres of the different programs analysed for this study. Loanwords was the most common borrowing type with 493 followed by loanshifts with 31. Loanblends were very uncommon with only 3 found, suggesting further research or a different approach. The results were also compatible with findings in other languages.

  • 15.
    Pettersson, Josefina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “Four adventurers step through a wardrobe…”: a study of character development in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis 2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Criticism of C.S. Lewis’s The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe has previously been in the area of religion. The aspect of narratology and the psychological development of the children in the novel has therefore been given limited amount attention. This essay addresses the rather uncharted area and explores the four protagonists’ growth as characters from the perspective of the narratological structure of the novel, the home-away-home adventure. The structure of the narrative is provided by two literary critics, Jon Stott and Christopher Clausen. The theory of the return-to-reality closure frame by Sarah Gilead deepens the analysis of the development of the characters. Joseph Campbell’s hero myth is also fundamental to the essays theoretical models, as it addresses the mythical content of the narrative as well as the narratological structure in the novel. The aim of the study is therefore to explore Lewis’s use of the narrative model home-away-home and the significance of the return in the selected novel in order to establish what effects the adventure has on the characters. In addition to the characters’ development and maturation, the question if the reader is part of the escape and is affected by the characters’ development is discussed in accordance with the theoretical models.

     

    Keywords: psychology, children literature, Narnia, C.S. Lewis, home-away-home, child development, return, narratology

  • 16.
    Zhang, Zhiyin
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “I never thought about those rules in all my languages”: A comparative study of teaching the English articles in the multilingual classroom from a monolingual or a multilingual approach2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This study is conducted to compare the effect of practicing a multilingual approach to a monolingual approach in teaching the English article system for students with multilingual backgrounds. Through a structured experiment in light of sociolinguistic and second language acquisition theories, two different discourses (complexes of signs and practices that organize social existence and social reproduction) structuring different legitimate languages are implemented in each respective approach. In the multilingual approach, all languages in the participants’ language repertoire are legitimized and encouraged, while only Standard English is legitimized in the monolingual approach. Three groups of informants participated in the experiment. Two groups of young informants with low English proficiency, and one group of adult informants with intermediate English proficiency participated in the experiment. The majority of the participants have more than two languages in their language repertoires. The multilingual approach was adopted in one of the young groups and the adult group. The study shows that all informants improved in their use of the English article system, regardless of the different approaches. The informants with lower English proficiency level and with a strongest [-ART] language (language with no articles) improved 40.9% in the multilingual approach, which is almost twice as much as the improvement in the monolingual approach. However, the young informants in both groups tend to be confused about the use of the indefinite article a/an after the exercise. The improvements tend to remain in a longer period of time with the multilingual approach in both the adult group and the young group. In addition, the participants tend to show higher rates of concentration, positive emotional feelings and engagement during and after the multilingual approach. The results suggest that it is beneficial to deploy the multilingual approach, through intentional structuring of the legitimized languages in classroom.

  • 17.
    Begovic, Naida
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    In Pursuit of “Never Again”: A Philological Study of the Functional Possibilities of the Memoir in Post-war Bosnia and Herzegovina2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This essay is based on a critical revision of the Scholars’ Initiative, a ten-year research project conducted by Charles Ingrao whose goal was to confront the controversies in former Yugoslav societies by creating a common, non-custom-made narrative of Balkan history. More specifically, this essay focuses on the revision of the scope, and methodology of the project. The former is limited to Bosnia and Herzegovina, whereas the latter includes the predominant use, and study of memoirs in the making of a common, transethnic narrative of the genocide. The goal with this revision is to highlight Ingrao’s partake in a century long tradition of suppressing Bosniak prosperity in Balkan societies, which has resulted in a scarcity of Bosniak literature. Ultimately, this essay focuses on the witness literature, which was produced in the aftermath of the genocide in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992-1995. More specifically, this essay uses Kemal Kurspahić’s As Long As Sarajevo Exists (1997), Wounded I Am More Awake (2012) by Esad Boškailo, and The Bosnia List: A Memoir of War, Exile, and Return (2014) by Kenan Trebinčević as springboards in arguing for the functional possibilities of the memoir genre in the creating of a common, transethnic narrative in post-war Bosnia and Herzegovina. To claim for the historiographical validity of the memoir, the impossibility of the singular narrative, and the poetic of responsibility, this essay makes use of Jacques Derrida’s Sovereignties in Question: The Poetics of Paul Celan. This essay also makes use of Gregory H. Stanton’s Ten Stages of Genocide as a way to demonstrate a model by which the common, transethnic narrative can be studied, and further explored. The ultimate goal with the critical study of Stanton’s stages is to qualify the memoir genre as an official genre of genocide research in post-war Bosnia and Herzegovina.

     

    Keywords: Common, transethnic narrative; post-war Bosnia; genocide; testimony; history

  • 18.
    Amdaouech, Leila
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “It is not important whether one speaks British English or American English”: A Questionnaire-Based Study of English Teachers’ Attitudes in Sweden2018Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Although there have been some studies conducted in Sweden about the language attitudes

    towards different varieties of English, most of these studies have focused on the language

    attitudes found amongst students. There have not, however, been many studies conducted

    that examines teachers’ language attitudes. The focus of the present study is to investigate

    which attitudes are found towards two varieties of English, American English and British

    English, amongst English teachers in Sweden. The study also aims to explore whether the

    teachers’ age and language backgrounds have an impact on the teachers’ attitudes. The

    hypothesis was that older teachers would be more positively inclined towards British

    English while younger teachers would prefer American English. Furthermore, it was also

    hypothesized that teachers who grew up monolingual would prefer British English and

    those who grew up bilingual would favour American English. The data collection method

    that was used in the study was a questionnaire which was distributed online to English

    teachers in Sweden. 115 teachers participated in the study and answered the

    questionnaire, which provided both quantitative and qualitative data. The results of the

    study show that the teachers seem to display equally positive attitudes towards both

    varieties. For example, American English is favoured in terms of being most familiar,

    easiest to understand and easiest to teach. British English, on the other hand, is favoured

    in terms of pleasantness and is in many ways seen as more respected. The findings of the

    study did confirm the hypotheses to a certain degree. The results showed a tendency

    amongst younger teachers and teachers who have grown up bilingual to prefer American

    English. In contrast, the tendency amongst older teachers and teachers who have grown

    up monolingual was to prefer British English. Overall, the results of the study raise the

    question of how these attitudes affect the teachers’ teaching of English.

  • 19.
    Bamberg, Jesper
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Lack of Faith in the Forgotten Novel: Sartrean Existentialism in John Williams' Stoner2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    John Williams’ modest and long forgotten American novel Stoner revolves around life choices, commitment and passions able to carry meaning in our existence. In this essay, I will explore how John Williams conveys the notions of bad faith and existence precedes essence of Sartrean existentialism through the protagonist William Stoner’s life and life choices in the novel Stoner. I will argue that the Sartrean concepts bad faith and existence precedes essence can illuminate the actions of the protagonist Stoner, in order to understand Stoner’s romantic relationships and explain his epiphany before death in the novel. Finally, the answers reveal the protagonist’s misguided belief in pursuing goals which does not align with his true passions in life. Instead, Stoner’s insights concerning his life explain why his true passions justified his life choices in the narrative.

    Key words: Williams; Stoner; Sartre; existentialism; bad faith; existence precedes essence

  • 20.
    Hyvärinen, Simon
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Metro 2033: A Question about narrative2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Video game analysis began with a debate between narratologists and ludologists. They debated whether video games should be analysed using narrative theories or strictly as video games. This debate concluded that a hybrid approach should be used, analysing video games with theories from both fields. Since then, many new theories have been developed for the analysis of the narrativity of video games. This thesis will compare the novel Metro 2033 (Metro 2033A) with the video game of the same name, Metro 2033 (Metro 2033B) and analyse how different narrative elements co-exist in the two media, and how narrative elements function together to achieve flow, or immersion, in the experiences of readers and players. Kari Salen and Eric Zimmerman introduced the concept of embedded and emergent narrative, which this thesis will employ for its analysis. It will also use Martin Picard’s notion of segmentation to discuss the design of Metro 2033B and to compare the game to the novel Metro 2033A. The thesis finds that segmentation is of great importance for immersion and it argues that the successful combination of narrative elements relies on seamless segmentation. Furthermore, the thesis points to the importance of merging different narrative elements to create an immersive experience.

    Keywords: Metro 2033, narrative, ludology, video games, segmentation, immersion

  • 21.
    Frey, Vanessa
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Outer Circle Englishes in the Expanding Circle Classroom: A Qualitative Study on Swedish Teachers’ Attitudes towards Singapore English Accents2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The English language has become more globalised, with different varieties and accents being used around the world. English is no longer merely Received Pronunciation (RP); it is equally as central in countries that belong to what is known as the ‘Outer Circle’ in the context of World Englishes and the Three Circles model (Kachru, 1992a). Citizens of these countries often speak multiple languages and some use English as their first language, although it does not always completely resemble the English used within the ‘Inner Circle’ (the United Kingdom, for example). One of these countries is Singapore, where English has become the official language and is also used as a lingua franca (ELF). While Standard Singapore English is used in formal settings, the local Singlish is more common in everyday situations and most Singaporeans can switch between the two depending on their surroundings (Melchers & Shaw, 2011). These accents are, however, not commonly recognised in Sweden, and less so in a teaching context. In the core content of the subject English 5 in Swedish upper secondary schools it is stated that teaching should incorporate “the spread of English and its position in the world” (Skolverket, 2011, p. 3). Nevertheless, the instructional focus tends to be on the culture and traditions of English-speaking countries instead of language use. Therefore, the present study will investigate teachers’ attitudes towards Outer Circle Englishes and, more specifically, Singapore English. The aim is to answer research questions regarding what attitudes English teachers in Swedish upper secondary schools have towards Outer Circle Englishes, attitude differences regarding teaching experience, and what these teachers can do to incorporate these Englishes in their teaching. The respondents include three experienced and three newly graduated English teachers who all teach in Swedish upper secondary schools. The study has a qualitative approach where the data was collected through semi-structured interviews. To examine Singapore English, the respondents also listened to two audio clips of Singapore English speakers and discussed these accents as well as their attitudes towards them. The results show that teachers from both groups need more knowledge regarding Outer Circle Englishes to acquire a more positive attitude towards these to, in turn, portray this positivity onto their students when discussing the English varieties that exist in the world. The study concludes by suggesting that Outer Circle Englishes need to be explicitly incorporated in the teacher education programme at university for these to be more accepted in the English classroom.

  • 22.
    Kaarle, Oskar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Queering in the Rye: Teaching The Catcher in the Rye as Queer Literature2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    J.D. Salinger’s seminal novel The Catcher in the Rye contains several scenes of sexual ambiguity which open up for queer readings of the novel. The first part of this essay will be a queering of the text, examining scenes of sexual ambiguity, and looking at the way masculinity is perceived and portrayed in the novel. This analysis argues that Holden’s issues stem from his protective nature not allowing him to perform masculinity in a normative fashion for the era, which the novel portrays as an oppressive form of masculinity that victimizes women and others who do not fit the role of a white, straight male.

    The second part of the essay will look at why and how a queer reading of The Catcher in the Rye should be taught. The main point being that queer and other non-normative texts are often overlooked in classroom settings. This has real-world consequences for the non-normative individuals made invisible and silenced by this practice. There is a need for queer voices and texts in education. By engaging students in discussions about norms by relating normativity to the novel, one can draw attention to the way norms can restrict individuals, just as they might empower others. This can help students form their own critical ways of analysing literature in the future, as well as the way they perceive the world and people around them.

  • 23.
    Fjeldstad, Snorre
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Religion and Identity in Charlotte Brontë's Villette2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [sv]

    This essay is about how religion is portrayed and attitudes towards religion in Charlotte Brontë’s novel Villette, focused mainly on the Anglicanism of the novel’s main character and narrator, Lucy Snowe, and the local form of Catholicism of the town of Villette, where most of the action takes place. Also included in the essay is the characters notion of foreignness and what it is to be English. Living in another country, the main characters identity as an Englishperson becomes altogether much clearer. This leads to several cultural clashes and a strengthening or weakening of identity. The goal is to see whether this novel can be considered anti-Catholic as well as how Englishness is viewed as an example of otherness. The study concludes that the novel has several elements of Anti-Catholicism. Some of the characters of the novel may be seen more as caricatures of Catholics. Otherness is also a central theme in the novel. The protagonist of the novel appears to be someone who always seems to be out of place and as noted by Gilbert and Gubar, she may feel out of place wherever she goes. Although her religious and national identity are under threat, Lucy keeps her religion, and even though she learns French, she keeps her English identity. In the end she gets a dual identity, both as a Labassecourian and as an Englishperson. Eventually Lucy finds her way in Villette and is happy, but it is not until she is on her own and has left the girl’s school that she finds true happiness.

  • 24.
    Ironside, Joseph
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Renewed Shall Be Blade That Was Broken: Tolkien, Modernity and Fascist Utopia2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis consists of a close reading and meta-analysis of themes and patterns in the works that comprise the fictional world of “Middle-Earth” created by J. R. R. Tolkien, in specific relation to the culturally prevalent views of the decadence of modernity and the ideological dynamics of fascism. This thesis explores the ideological dynamics of the fictional world constructed by Tolkien’s texts, and argues that his work contains demonstrable similarities to the ideological dynamics of fascism in its response to the existential challenges of modernity. To clarify, this thesis does not argue that Tolkien’s fiction can be read as “fascist,” tout court, but rather to give a comprehensive outline of how the fictional world created within his texts relate to discourses critical of modernisation and to what extent the aesthetic and ideological dynamics of this world present what I will call a fascist utopia. Tolkien’s work will be approached using the arguments and theories from canonical texts and authors regarding discourses on modernity, including works from the fields of philosophy (Nietzsche), political economy (Marx and Engels), literary studies, sociology (Durkheim, Weber and Simmel) and psychology (Freud). Alongside this I will use relevant studies of fascism to analyse how Tolkien fits within and relates to the aforementioned discourses. I assert the findings that Tolkien creates a world which, in its attempts to renew the values of the past through the presentation of mythology, rootedness, community, agrarianism and hierarchy, demonstrates a semi-fascistic utopia. This is not to cast aspersions or make claims about Tolkien’s creative intentions or personal ideology, rather an observation as to the content and themes of his fictional world. I will argue this fictional world aligns with fascist concepts of identity, nationhood, heritage, mythology and renewal; however, at the same time finding it non-aligned with the central thrust of fascism, in its overt condemnation of industrialism and technology. This contradictory combination produces a fictional world which presents the renewal of what Roger Griffin terms the “shields against ontological terror” (75) now lost or delegitimised in the modern age.

  • 25.
    Abed, Sarah
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Teachers’ perceptions of peer review on written assignment in English: A qualitative study of six teachers at two junior high schools in Stockholm2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    Peer review is aan interestingwell-researched  topic, with much research focusing on the students’' own perceptions of peer review/assessment as well as benefits and challenges with the method. However, little research has been conducted on teachers’ perceptions of students’ peer review of written assignments in English, with a general focus on junior high school level in a Swedish school. Thus, this study was aimed at examining six English teachers’´ perceptions and their usage of peer review of written assignments in English at two junior high schools in Stockholm. A qualitative method was applied, with semi-structured interviews which were analysed using content analysis. The findings revealed that the teachers used different strategies during peer review depending on students’ knowledge level, social competence and the challenges and opportunities that the method offered. Despite a lack of knowledge about the English language and other variables such as different personalities and lack of self-confidence causing difficulties for students to implement peer review as intended, teachers still had positive attitudes towards peer review on written assignments in English. In order to enhance the implementation of peer review, both teachers and students need to become familiar with the practical implementation of the method. Future classroom research within the Swedish education system will help engender favourable conditions that move learning forward.

     

  • 26.
    Villegas Martínez, Jorge
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Teaching speaking in the English classroom: Teacher practices in Swedish upper secondary schools2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This qualitative study aims to investigate how teachers of English as a foreign language (EFL) work to develop their students’ oral proficiency. The study analyses interviews and pedagogical materials to elucidate how the interviewed teachers regard their students’ oral proficiency, what kind of activities they use for teaching speaking and how they assess oral proficiency. The participants were two licensed English teachers of higher upper secondary education, and different materials that the teachers used were analysed, including a textbook. The teachers regarded their students’ oral proficiency as generally good or very good but noted that significant differences existed in most groups regarding proficiency and that certain students who were less proficient showed an unwillingness to use the target language, which indicates a need of better strategies to involve these students in the learning process. The findings of this study suggest that the interviewed EFL teachers teach speaking according to the communicative approach and that the activities they use more frequently for teaching speaking were discussions, followed by presentations, speeches, role-playing and debates. However, the interviews and the pedagogical materials reflected a lack of focus on the features of spoken language, the importance of which has been proven by findings in corpus linguistics and conversation analysis. These findings indicate a need to raise awareness among teachers about the benefits of focusing on the features of spoken language. Regarding assessment, informal formative assessment in the form of direct observation was the most common form, while formal assessment was used in presentations and examinations in the form of group discussions. The teachers acknowledged some confusion regarding assessment due to the lack of clear guidelines from Skolverket. Moreover, they regarded speaking as being more important than other skills, which indicates the possibility of redefining the value of speaking in the course evaluation.

  • 27.
    Landh, Therese
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The Coming of Age of a Woman: Proto-feminism and Female Bildung in Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis examines the influence of the proto-feminist ideas of the Enlightenment on Jane Austen’s Northanger Abbey, specifically their presence in the coming-of-age journey of the novel’s heroine Catherine Morland. In this thesis, the proto-feminist ideas of the Enlightenment discussed are based on the ideas of Mary Wollstonecraft as presented in A Vindication of the Rights of Woman. I focus on Wollstonecraft’s emphasis on the importance of reason for the emancipation of women as well as the role of virtue and modesty, but also on the existence of an ambivalent relationship between sense and sentiment. The aim of the thesis is to show that Catherine Morland’s coming-of-age journey in Northanger Abbey can be understood as a representation of the emancipation of women that Wollstonecraft hopes for, and that the obstacles standing in the way of Catherine’s maturation are parallel to the obstacles which, during the Enlightenment, prevented women from claiming reason for themselves. First, I draw upon Wollstonecraft’s criticism of sentimental fiction and its hampering effect on women’s minds and show that the same idea is present in the narrative of Northanger Abbey, in the shape of gothic fiction. Then, I show how Catherine’s ability to discern between virtuous and immodest behaviour improves drastically as she starts to exercise her reason, in concurrence with Wollstonecraft’s claim that all virtuous thought must stem from reason. I analyse the importance of Catherine’s choice of partner and its relationship to the proto-feminist critique of women’s inability to express ideas contrary to those of a man. Finally, I dissect the proto-feminist ambivalent relationship between sense and sentiment and connect it to the finale of Northanger Abbey. These elements put together all point toward Wollstonecraft and Austen being coextensive, and demonstrate how Austen makes use of Wollstonecraft’s ideas to promote the emergence of female bildung.

  • 28.
    Marusic, Anja
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The Frankenstein's Monster Project: Learning to Understand the Monster2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The present essay sets out to research what literary tools an author can use in order to create what Suzanne Keen calls narrative empathy. One of the most effective techniques used to evoke narrative empathy in a reader is to help the reader feel character identification for a character, for example by using a first-person narrative. Additionally, character identification is further strengthened by an immersive narrative situation, which can be created through using a great deal of adequate imagery. The aim of the present essay is to explore the concept of narrative empathy. In order to do so, passages from Mary Shelley’s novel Frankenstein were analyzed to investigate how these literary devices can be used. The results show that Shelley used multiple tools to successfully create an empathic character out of a character that would usually be regarded as a monster or a villain. Some of the techniques used are a first-person narrative, a great deal of imagery, and switching between quicker and slower reading paces. In addition to the literary analysis of the novel, an alternative to how the novel and narrative empathy could be taught to upper secondary school students is presented. This plan is called The Frankenstein’s Monster Project, the aim of which is to teach students narrative empathy and to raise students’ awareness regarding bullying and alienation. The thesis suggests that this could be done through a wide range of exercises, in which all four skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing) will be incorporated for an increased motivation and retention of knowledge.

  • 29.
    Hudberg, Alexander
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The Ministry of Post-Truth: Using George Orwell’s 1984 to Develop English as a Foreign Language Students’ Critical Thinking Skills2018Independent thesis Advanced level (professional degree), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    In 2016, “post-truth” was chosen as the word of the year by the Oxford Dictionaries. This is a concept that has come to be associated with a type of political discourse in which objective facts are less important than factual inaccuracies which appeal to emotion to influence people’s attitudes. Due to this recent increase in post-truth politics, critical thinking becomes an important skill to master. Yet, studies have suggested that students often lack the necessary skills for critical thinking. One way of approaching this problem is through the reading of literature. This essay specifically argues that George Orwell’s 1984 provides teachers with an excellent opportunity to develop critical thinking skills among upper secondary English as a foreign language (EFL) students, with the novel as an excellent platform to also promote student reflection on current post-truth politics. In order to work with 1984 to foster critical thinking, this essay utilizes a literature-based, pedagogical model developed by Bobkina and Stefanova that draws inspiration from elements of reader-response theory and critical literacy pedagogy (CLP). To show how 1984 can be used to discuss current post-truth politics, a thematic analysis was performed where central themes and concepts from the novel, such as doublethink, Newspeak and telescreens, were compared to current trends in post-truth politics. The analysis itself was structured around the following themes: the distortion of truth for political gains, the use of language as an instrument of political power and the use of technology to spread misinformation. Following the analysis, a lesson project based on Bobkina and Stefanova’s four-stage model was constructed, focusing on different pre-, while- and post-reading activities aimed at making the students develop their critical thinking skills as well as their awareness of the three themes mentioned above. While this approach is deemed suitable for working with 1984 to discuss post-truth politics, a suggestion for further research would be to use Bobkina and Stefanova’s model together with more contemporary dystopian novels in order to discuss other topics that are more relatable to young adults, e.g. identity issues and social stratification.

  • 30.
    Martinez, Juan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The Missing Lorry: A study of which English variety is more common among Swedish students2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    English is a global language that is spoken by the majority of the people in Sweden. The Swedish education of the English language has been based on the British variety since the end of World War II. However, with the introduction of American movies, music, and television shows into the Swedish media, the number of Swedes who use the American English variety has increased. Because of the strong influence of American media, it has become more common to meet Swedes who speak a mix of British and American English. This present study was made to investigate which English variety is more common in Sweden. A survey was made compile data from a total of 30 participants of different ages and linguistic backgrounds. Instead of analyzing the accent and pronunciation of the participants, the testing focuses mainly on how Swedes use English vocabulary (would they say the American corn or the British maize?) and how they spell certain words (such as humor or humour).

  • 31.
    Brott, Jonathan
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The Point of Play: Resuscitating Romantic Irony in Metamodern Poetics2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This essay investigates the prospect of Romantic Irony’s potential resurgence in contemporary poetics and discusses its relevance and likeness with metamodernism.

    The internet has by now not only seeped into, but fully permeated, the process of literary production and distribution. The effect of this has been the birth of a new kind of poetic discourse which can broadly be called metamodernism, The New Sincerity or Alt-lit. This movement is characterized by its self-reflexive metacommentary, fragmentary nature and an oscillation between of irony and sincerity. Vermeulen and Akker, among others, have hinted at metamodernism’s relation to Romanticism, but research into the specifics of its tendency towards Romantic Irony is scarce. By viewing the writings of Steve Roggenbuck (a central figure in the new poetic movement), alongside the philosophy of Friedrich Schlegel, I propose a comparative framework for discussion of sincerity, irony and the instrumentalization of contemporary metamodernist writing.

    I demonstrate that Roggenbuck’s writing displays narratological, tropological and thematic tendencies commonly associated with both Romantic Irony and metamodernism. Apart from broader structural comparison, I attempt a comparative analysis between Roggenbuck’s poetry (2010-2015) and Thomas Carlyle’s novel “Sartor Resartus” (1833-1834) in order to provide a visualisation of the rhetorical and narratological strategies of Romantic Irony. I aim to frame Romantic Irony as a sensibility, or mode of discourse - rather than a strict system of thought - which may still be at work today. In extension, the sensibilities of Romantic Irony may shed further light into the philosophical potential of the seemingly incomprehensible and contradictory tendencies of metamodernism. By ironicizing its poetic form, literary ambition and desire for sincerity in a post-postmodern era, Roggenbuck’s poetry celebrates ambiguity and literary failure, ultimately framing irony as a constructive and potentially democratic operation.

  • 32.
    Mateo Vázquez, Alejandra
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The Use of MAKE and TAKE by Spanish and Italian Learners of English: A Corpus Study2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The present paper investigates the use of two high–frequency verbs: make and take. These verbs are particularly interesting since they express basic meaning (the meaning of the verb is mostly determined by its combinations). Therefore, they do not constitute a problem in learners’ comprehension. However, because they have little semantic content, learning how to use them appropriately has proved to be tricky even for advanced learners (Howarth, 1998; Altenberg & Granger, 2001; Nesselhauf, 2003; Futgi et al. 2008). The aim of this study is to analyse learners’ ability to produce the two high-frequency verbs to uncover features of non–nativeness of learner language in relation to the use of these verbs, such as overuse/underuse of certain verbs, nouns, collocations or structures, focusing on Spanish and Italian learners of English. Corpus Linguistics (CL) is particularly useful for looking for this type of non–native usage patterns. Learner Corpora will be studied using CIA, Contrastive Interlanguage Analysis (Granger, 1998) as a method, more specifically NL/IL comparison (native language vs interlanguage) to be able to compare native and non–native speakers’ performances in comparable situations. A second type of comparison will be made between two interlanguages (Spanish and Italian). Including a second L2 variety allows to distinguish general L2 features from characteristics that are exclusive to one particular language. Authentic learner data has been retrieved from the International Corpus of Learner English (ICLE). ICLE contains argumentative essays produced by advanced second language learners of English from different mother–tongue backgrounds. The Louvain Corpus of Native English Essays (LOCNESS) is used as a control corpus to compare it with the learner corpora. Results bring further evidence that high-frequency verbs are difficult items even for advanced English learners. In addition, the two learner groups share some of the problems, while others, despite the similarities between the two languages, are related to the L1 of the learners. These results have pedagogical implications: teachers should aim to improve learners’ productive capacities of those items that have not been fully mastered yet, such as high-frequency verbs.

     

  • 33.
    Buco, Stefani
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    The video essay as a persuasive genre: A qualitative genre analysis with a focus on evaluative and persuasive linguistic features2018Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    So called ‘video essays’ on films and cinema have gained substantial popularity on the video sharing internet site YouTube in the past years. This essay explores this relatively recent type of video production from the perspective of genre analysis in order to investigate whether a pattern of form, content and style can be identified, which would suggest the emergence of a new genre. Previous research has investigated a similar genre, the film review, by identifying its pervasive or obligatory moves or stages (Taboada, 2011; de Jong & Burgers, 2013). However, video essays seem to be a rather subjective form of communication, with a clear persuasive purpose. For this reason, linguistic elements expressing evaluation, assessment, feelings and opinions are analyzed in the following under the umbrella term for evaluative language use, that is Appraisal (White, 2015). Five video essays from different creators were chosen for the present analysis, which is focused on situational, structural, and Appraisal elements. The analysis shows that there indeed are similarities between the video essays, pertaining both to their situational context and structure, and their use of evaluative language. Several overall pervasive moves were found, which suggests that the essays follow a specific structural pattern. The evaluative language indicates an intention of persuading the viewer.

  • 34.
    Asinger, Taban
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Translanguaging in the English Classroom: Multilingual Education in Swedish Upper Secondary Schools2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    For second language learners, good learning conditions are connected to a classroom environment where valuable knowledge is to be acquired. As a teacher, one’s aim is to provide an environment that benefits every student in the classroom. There are a wide range of pedagogical practices for teachers to apply in the multilingual classroom, such as a translanguaging approach. Translanguaging in an educational setting refers to a pedagogical practice where multilingual students are encouraged to use their languages as a resource in the learning process of a new language to facilitate their learning. Previous studies have explored translanguaging both worldwide and in Sweden, inside and outside language classrooms. This ethnographic qualitative research paper presents an investigation of translanguaging and is conducted in a Swedish multicultural upper secondary school. The aim is to investigate the English teachers’ attitudes towards translanguaging and their incorporation of multilingualism in the classroom. The data is collected through semi-structured interviews and in-class observations. The recruited participants are five English teachers teaching at upper secondary school as well as students studying English at upper secondary school, in Stockholm. An in-depth analysis of the interviews and in-class observations resulted in the findings that English teachers in Swedish upper secondary schools keep a positive attitude towards translanguaging. Despite their positive attitudes, some of the teachers do not use translanguaging practices to a great extent as they argue that communication in the target language is also necessary for language development and fluency. Translanguaging is used in the classrooms for a wide range of purposes, such as clarifying instructions, explaining and comparing grammar rules and lexical items and when providing definitions of various words. The translanguaging practices in the classroom functions as a means to emphasize and express feelings. The Swedish language is declared as the lingua franca in the classroom and is used by the teachers and the majority of the students, however in one of the classrooms Spanish occurred as well. 

  • 35.
    Berlin, Christian
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Usurped upon a living thought - A Freudian reading of J. M. Coetzee's Disgrace2018Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This essay is an attempt to develop a Freudian psychoanalytical argument in the reading of J. M. Coetzee’s Disgrace. As this essay argues, an unresolved Oedipus complex lies hidden in the novel and permeates its narrative and the actions undertaken by David Lurie, its main protagonist. The present essay further aims to demonstrate that the novel’s structure equals the enactment of what Freud described as the primal fantasy, as experienced during the phallic stage of the psychosexual development, i.e. the seduction, the primal scene and the castration. Lurie’s attempts of seduction of his objects of desire are dramatically disrupted by a traumatic perception of the primal scene, which results in his symbolic castration and humiliation. Moreover, this essay argues that the protagonist’s relentless pursuit for desire and self-indulging gratification is the result of an underdeveloped superego due to the incomplete resolution of the Oedipus complex. In complying with the reality principle of the society, the incestuous desire towards Lurie’s own mother has been repressed into the unconscious of his mental apparatus, where it constantly exercises a tremendous pressure on the ego. Through a complex distortion process, taking place in his unconscious, mainly in the workings of his dreams, Lurie’s incestuous desire for his mother is displaced to his daughter Lucy. Lurie’s obstinacy to refuse to compromise on acting out on his desires, and to denounce them as wrong and immoral, is strongly motivated by his romantic eros. This behaviour can also be seen as a defence mechanism for his waning masculine virility and loss of control and power of his life. A giving up of his Eros would inevitably lead to death. Lurie’s figurative castration is completed as a male rival usurps his role of father, thus symbolically resolving the Oedipus complex, and sending Lurie on a possible path to redemption.

  • 36.
    Muhaba, Hagar
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A Clockwork Orange and the Question of Free Will2017Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    In A Clockwork Orange the main character's uncompromising exercise of free will is perceived as a threat to society. The only way the government sees fit to deal with Alex is by subjecting him to an invasive behavior-altering procedure. The novel depicts a government that is intolerant of individuals whose actions deviate from social norms. The price Alex has to pay for deviating is his ability to enjoy free will.

            The purpose of this paper is to analyse the theme of free will in A Clockwork Orange. Since Alex is the vehicle through which the novel chooses to discuss values, Alex's ethics, motives, and actions are analyzed in order to better grasp the novel's claim about free will. The significance of Alex's initial disinterest, and later interest, in participating in society is also explored. Foucault's theory of power as well as Steiner's philosophy of freedom have been used to better understand the issues involved.

            The character of Alex is used to demonstrate free will and its limitations; at first as an example of free will manifested without constraints, and later as an instance of society’s containment of free will. By turning Alex into a conformist, the novel points to the obstacles that stand between the individual and his ability to practice free will. In the failure of Alex’s attempt to claim autonomy, the novel makes a statement about the fate of free will generally.

  • 37.
    Svedberg, Katarina
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A Deeply Satisfying Lie?: Authorship, Performance, and Recognition in 21st Century American Novels2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    There has been a considerable amount of research done on questions of authorship over the past century or so, and the interest in the subject is still going strong today. This essay takes as its point of departure two seminal poststructuralist essays on authorship—Roland Barthes’s “The Death of the Author,” and Michel Foucault’s “What is an Author?”—as these texts have had a significant impact on the discourse. It examines how scholars like Seán Burke and Jane Gallop have explained this anti-authorial tendency and extended the connection between authors and death, and how their findings relate to a performative conception of authorship. The study will take as its central critical approach the study of authorship as cultural performance as formulated by Ingo Berensmeyer, Gert Buelens, and Marysa Demoor, and Sonja Longolius. It will utilize this approach to analyze four contemporary American novels—James Frey’s A Million Little Pieces (2003), Paul Auster’s Travels in the Scriptorium (2006), Ron Currie Jr.’s Flimsy Little Plastic Miracles (2013), and J.J. Abrams and Doug Dorst’s S. (2013)—and the different ways in which these novels problematize notions of authorial self-invention. The focus of the analysis will be on the author-reader relationship, moments of recognition, and developments in writing technology. These issues have been selected for their connection to current conceptions of the creation of author personae, which can in turn be viewed as reflecting performance as it takes place in daily life and therefore give indications as to the cultural climate in which the novels were produced. Ultimately, the aim is to have illustrated how these novels present the reader with textually traced author personae that are highly aware of their own performances. In addition, it is suggested that authors are dependent on their readers to recognize these personae for them to become felicitously legitimized.

  • 38.
    Al Ansari-Imad, Ali
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    A quantitative study on the application and comprehension of English connectors by Swedish L2 learners of English in upper secondary schools2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This study focuses on L2 learners of English in Swedish upper secondary schools and their ability to comprehend and use connectors in a multiple-choice cloze procedure. Connectors are used in text to signal the text structure and make explicit the relation between text segments. A study by Geva (1992) suggests that with an increased proficiency, learners also improve their ability to comprehend text relations and the use of connectors. The present study applies the suggestions of Geva’s results in a Swedish context. English in Swedish upper secondary schools, is taught at three levels (designated English 5, 6, 7) with increasing difficulty and proficiency level requirements. This study tests the ability to comprehend the context and use the correct connector on pupils in the two mandatory courses (English 5 & 6). Similar to previous studies, the aim is to investigate the relationship between levels of English and the ability to use connectors. This empirical survey investigates the English 5 & 6 pupils’ success in applying the appropriate connector in relation to the level of English they are placed in, in order to analyze whether there is any perceived development, as is presupposed by the English curriculum. Furthermore, the study also aims to analyze what type of connectors the pupils excel at or struggle with and any factors that might affect pupils’ performance. The test consisted of three categories: adversative (6 questions), additive (5 questions), and causal connectors (4 questions), a total of 15 questions, with one point being awarded for each correct response. The results of the two groups were similar and a subsequent t-test revealed that there was no statistical significance between the two groups in any of the categories. This suggests that in the sample which was tested there is no proficiency increase in terms of connectors and comprehending inter-/intrasentential relationships. Furthermore, the results indicate that the pupils are more likely to correctly select the appropriate adversative and causal connectors, but struggled in selecting the additive connectors.

    Keywords: connectors, comprehension, intrasentential & intersentential relationships, teaching, coherence, cohesion

  • 39.
    Özkan, David
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Academically Reading: University students’ reading habits and reported attitudes towards Academic English2017Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The use of English has increased greatly in the higher education system with universities across the world including English as part of their education programs. One of many consequences of this is that many students have to read and study in a second or foreign language, which has shown to be of difficulty for many students according to previous research. The purpose of this present study is to investigate the academic reading habits of students and explore their perceptions and attitudes towards reading academic English, and what experiences they have in relation to that. A total of 68 participants took part in this study, all recruited at Stockholm University. All participants responded to a questionnaire and interviews were conducted with four of the students. A relatively high degree of commitment was reported towards the assigned reading and a majority of the students did not perceive reading academic English as difficult and reported mostly positive attitudes about it. The results suggest that the personal interest and perception of the assigned reading is crucial and matter more for students than the target language.

  • 40.
    Molander, Christoffer
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Amiable Humor and Dual Address in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer2017Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The humor of Mark Twain has long fascinated his readers. Critics such as Messent (2007), Budd (2005), Gerber (1988) and Camfield (2005) have all analyzed Mark Twain’s humor to reveal nuances and to help further the understanding of what makes Twain’s writing humorous. However, there is a distinct gap in the research so far conducted investigating Twain’s humor in relation to young readers, which this paper will begin to address. Twain’s novel The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (2007) poses a relevant subject for this research as Twain explicitly (in the preface to the novel) professes to write both for children and adults simultaneously. Writing in such a way can be categorized as either “double address” or “dual address”, understanding these terms according to the definitions of Barbara Wall (1991).

    In this paper I will argue that Mark Twain manages to create “dual address” in Tom Sawyer by using what Greg Camfield (2005) calls “amiable humor” and constructing scenes out of childhood in order to produce delight and nostalgia. By reading closely excerpts of the book and analyzing Twain’s specific use of humor through three prominent theories—superiority theory, relief theory and incongruity— it becomes possible to identify what the implied reader is meant to find humorous, and therefore if Twain manages to establish a “dual address”. An understanding of Twain’s humor from the perspective of both young and adult reader furthers our understanding of the novel by revealing Twain’s implementation of complex “dual address” narration and its implications.

  • 41.
    Fairless-Clarkson, Victoria
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “An English which is not connected to Great Britain, the USA or any other geographical region.”: How is English presented in the Swedish educational television series Pick a colour?2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    English is used worldwide as a native, second and foreign language and as a language of international communication. The uses and status of English in Sweden have been discussed in terms of its influence and ubiquity, with its presence in daily life leading some to consider English could be better described as a second, rather than foreign, language in the country. This study analyses how English is presented in the Swedish educational television series Pick a colour and considers how this can be related to the status of English as a global language and specifically the use of English in Sweden. This paper uses an approach drawing on nexus analysis, together with content analysis, to trace the key language ideologies surrounding English presented in Pick a colour and its surrounding texts, and to locate them within the context of the existing discourses in place. Analysis reveals that the series and related documents make attempts to move away from traditional native speaker British English and American English models of the language, and towards a “Global English” not linked to any specific geographical region and with a focus on communicative competence. However, as British English and American English and native-speaker models of the language are not directly challenged in the documents, and are given the greatest prominence in the series, it seems moving away from the status quo is still difficult in practice. The Swedish settings shown in the series, and emphases on the use of English in pupils’ daily lives allude to English being approached in a way more similar to a second, rather than foreign language in Sweden. 

  • 42.
    Zou, Qi
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    An experimental on Chinese university students' perceptions and attitudes towards Asian English accents2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    With the use of English language world wide in different domains, English has undoubtely become the most dominant lingua franca (Parijs, 2011). This has had implication for English language teaching (ELT), both in terms of actual practices and people's attitudes towards English. Although there have previous been numerous attitudinal studies, few have focused on the Chinese context, where the number of people who learn and use English keep increasing. With its experimental design, this study investigates and compares 202 Chinese university students' perceptions and attitudes towards four Asian English accents. A modofied version of the questionnaire from Jenkins' attitudinal (2007) was adopted to explore the attitudes and perceptions of two groups of university students. The results suggest that native English accents are still prefered in both groups as there are more than 90% of the participants who rank the native accents as the first and second. Native accents are graded higher in correctness, acceptability and pleasantness. However, the experimental group which has received information about the basic concepts and ideologies of World Englishes (WE) before doing the questionnaires shows higher acceptance to Asian English accents and grades those accents higher than the control group without the introduction. Brief semi-structured interviews are carried out to follow up on the questionnaire results, to further explore the reasons underlying the attitudinal responses. The results show that the participants in the control group tend to believe that the non-native English accents are 'wrong' and should be corrected, while the experimental group tends to accept the impracticality of achieving near-native accents and shows higher tolerance to the non-native accents. It is preliminary try of a 'WE-awareness' experimental attitudinal study which gives inspiration for a future study in a larger scale. It aims for contributing to the realization of 'Linguistic Equality' and gives implication to the ELT and teacher education in China.

  • 43.
    Stacey, Bibi
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Can minority languages survive around English?: An investigation into family language policy in the UK2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Family language policy (FLP) focusses on how languages are dealt with within the home; typically how languages are used and how they are maintained or promoted by family members. The present study investigates families living in the UK, where one parent is a native English speaker, and the other a native speaker of another language, the minority language. By use of a mixed-methods design, utilising questionnaires, interviews and logs, this paper answers the questions: what are the reported language practices of children and parents in bi- or multilingual families, what ideologies about FLP do parents in these families possess and what strategies do families reportedly employ in their homes. Through a nexus analysis approach, the paper establishes connections between the historical bodies, the interaction orders and the DIP of the families in order to account for their language behaviours in the home. The nexus analysis suggests that although parents show positive attitudes towards minority language use, it is the macro-level societal factors that are most powerful in determining language use within the home. That is, space plays an important role in choice of language practices. This finding suggests that children need more minority language exposure outside the home, therefore this paper suggests that the UK government could promote and encourage minority language maintenance through the implementation of language policy. 

  • 44.
    ALGAN, SIBEL
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    CHANGES IN MEANING IN SPEECH ERRORS: AN ANALYSIS OF LEXICAL SPEECH ERRORS IN NOUNS AND ADJECTIVES2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Speech Errors are the most widely recognized and discussed type of Language

    Processing Errors. They have been included as a research topic in many fields of study,

    e.g. cognitive linguistics, psychology and medicine. These studies have shown that

    speech errors are inevitable and very common: they can be observed in every kind of

    utterance, regardless of its formality or speakers’ age, socioeconomic background or

    environmental surroundings. Even though they are so ubiquitous, they are usually not

    paid attention to. Nevertheless, they might be representing a way of understanding how

    the human brain functions and why we dysfunction at times.

    In this paper, selected speech error examples from Fromkin’s Speech Error

    Database were analyzed in terms of the changes in meanings from target utterances into

    error utterances and the probable causes of the errors with the aim to discover any

    patterns of occurrence among erroneous speech. The focus of the examples has been

    lexical errors in nouns and adjectives.

    According to results of the analysis, contextual and environmental factors appear to

    contribute to the making of the errors in many different ways, along with the speakers’

    internal thoughts and representations of phenomena related to the utterances. These

    contributions could be accounted for various reasons. Along the keywords included in

    the search for patterns, distinctive features may only be observed in examples of

    opposite meaning. Thus, speech errors seem to have no typical ways of occurrence; still,

    some observable similarities among examples may be useful in further studies.

  • 45.
    Toll, Klara
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “Could that be diabolical, and really spotted with unseen evil, which was so spotless to the eye?”: Discipline and Homosexuality in Walter Pater's "Emerald Uthwart" and "Apollo in Picardy"2017Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    In Walter Pater’s work there are often mentions of discipline and ascesis in an explicitly positive way. But, in some of his work, discipline, although not ascesis, seem to be taking on a more negative form. Critics have nonetheless seemed satisfied with Pater’s explicit praise for discipline and the area is thus not very thoroughly researched. One area that is well researched is the homoerotic subtexts that are evident in a lot of Pater’s work, which critics have examined in a variety of different ways. I suggest analysing the imaginary portraits “Emerald Uthwart” and “Apollo in Picardy,” to argue that Pater contrasts the Ancient Greek notion of ascesis with the nineteenth century understanding of discipline in order to question the legal restrictions on homosexuality in late nineteenth century England. Due to the historical context of the 1885 Criminal Law Amendment Act, which criminalised homosexuality, and Pater’s regular use of—as well as his admiration for—Ancient Greece, I have found that there is a connection between discipline, ascesis, and homosexuality. In the essay I make use of some of Foucault’s theories, especially from The History of Sexuality Vol. 1 and Vol. 2., to argue that the juxtaposition between homosexuality and discipline and ascesis in the two portraits provides new insights to the intricacies of Pater’s work.

    Keywords: Walter Pater; discipline; ascesis; homosexuality; “Apollo in Picardy”; “Emerald Uthwart”; Imaginary Portraits

  • 46.
    Arenhäll, Matilda
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Digital tools in language learning: How teachers and students view technology in English language learning2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    This study was conducted to investigate what kind of digital tools teachers are using in the English as a second language classroom. It also examined two teachers’ and one student’s view on digital tools and what they believed were the advantages and disadvantages of using such tools. The study was conducted with a qualitative method. Specifically, the data were collected through semi-structured interviews with two English teachers from two different secondary schools in Stockholm and with one student from an English class taught by one of the teachers. The student was in year nine in the Swedish educational system. The findings indicate that the teachers use various kinds of digital devices and that their overall view of these devices is positive. The findings regarding the student’s view on digital tools are both positive and negative. However, if the student were to be given the choice of using or not using digital tools in the English language classroom, she would not use them. 

  • 47.
    Vikström, Niclas
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    “[E]en strict offensive och defensive alliance” and “the danger this King and the 2 Queens were in”: News Reporting in Early Modern Swedish and English Diplomatic Correspondence2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The study of early cross-linguistic diplomatic epistolography was first introduced in Brownlees' (2012) comparative study of Italian and English personal newsletters. Given the field’s young age and the strong need for both further research and the retrieving of new, untranscribed and unanalysed data, the present study set out to help move this field forward by examining, at both a textual superstructure and semantic macrostructural level, two sets of unchartered diplomatic newsletters which representatives at foreign courts despatched back to their respective home countries. The first set of original manuscripts comprises periodical newsletters which Baron Christer Bonde, the Swedish ambassador-extraordinary to England, wrote to Charles X, King of Sweden, between 1655-6, whereas the second set consists of letters sent in 1680 by John Robinson, England’s chargé d’affaires in Sweden, to Sir Leoline Jenkins, Secretary of State for the Northern Department of England. The analysis has shown that whereas the textual superstructures of the two diplomats’ correspondences remain similarly robust, the instantiating semantic macrostructures display not only stylistic and compositional, but also narrative, variation.

  • 48.
    Stålnacke, Klara
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Equality in the Classroom: A Norm Critical Approach to Teaching Democratic Values Using Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Tempest and The Taming of the Shrew2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The curriculum for upper secondary school clearly states that every school is obliged to ensure that teaching centres on and implements democratic values in order to prevent discrimination (Skolverket, 2013). How to do this however, is up to the local school to decide. Norm-critical pedagogy shows that in order to inculcate democratic values in education, the individual teacher must design the teaching material so that it focuses on such values (Bromseth & Darj, 2010). The purpose of this study, and the aim of this essay, is to investigate how democratic values can be implemented in classroom practice using Shakespeare’s The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Taming of The Shrew. English classes in the courses English 5 and English 6 were asked to read extracts from each of the plays, and then evaluate the play of choice in terms of the socio-political reality of the late Renaissance portrayed in the extracts, through the prism of today’s democratic values. The pupils were assisted in the task by having close-reading questions to answer, and later a smaller written assessment in form of a blog-entry, in order to help develop their thinking. The results of the study show that the pupils were perfectly able to evaluate and discuss values and practices such as equality, racism or sexism based on their reading. From a normpedagogical approach to teaching, it therefore seem that Shakespeare’s The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Taming of The Shrew can be utilised as teaching material in order to help foster the development of democratic values, and discussions around the same, into the classroom.

  • 49.
    Stålnacke, Klara
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Equality in the Classroom: A Norm Critical Approach to Teaching Democratic Values Using Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, The Tempest and The Taming of the Shrew2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (One Year)), 10 credits / 15 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    The curriculum for upper secondary school clearly states that every school is obliged to ensure that teaching centres on and implements democratic values in order to prevent discrimination (Skolverket, 2013). How to do this however, is up to the local school to decide. Norm-critical pedagogy shows that in order to inculcate democratic values in education, the individual teacher must design the teaching material so that it focuses on such values (Bromseth & Darj, 2010). The purpose of this study, and the aim of this essay, is to investigate how democratic values can be implemented in classroom practice using Shakespeare’s The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Taming of The Shrew. English classes in the courses English 5 and English 6 were asked to read extracts from each of the plays, and then evaluate the play of choice in terms of the socio-political reality of the late Renaissance portrayed in the extracts, through the prism of today’s democratic values. The pupils were assisted in the task by having close-reading questions to answer, and later a smaller written assessment in form of a blog-entry, in order to help develop their thinking. The results of the study show that the pupils were perfectly able to evaluate and discuss values and practices such as equality, racism or sexism based on their reading. From a norm-pedagogical approach to teaching, it therefore seem that Shakespeare’s The Tempest, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The Taming of The Shrew can be utilised as teaching material in order to help foster the development of democratic values, and discussions around the same, into the classroom. 

  • 50.
    May, Stephanie
    Stockholm University, Faculty of Humanities, Department of English.
    Following the Course: The Chronotope of 'The Road' and Acceleration in J.G. Ballard's The Atrocity Exhibition, Crash, and Concrete Island2017Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
    Abstract [en]

    Abstract

    Belonging to J.G. Ballard’s ‘Concrete and Steel’ period of the 1970’s, The Atrocity Exhibition (1970), Crash (1973), and Concrete Island (1974) depict worlds that, rather than being besieged by nature’s elements as in his earlier novels, are intoxicated by speed and technologisation. Highlighting the nexus of concrete and steel which frame the modern landscape, each of the novels elucidates what has been identified as Ballard’s fear of the devouring tendencies of motorways, airports, and suburban shopping mall culture. This thesis extends from ongoing discussions about Ballard’s landscapes, as it explores the relationship between time and space in the three novels from an Accelerationist perspective: a theory concerned with the rate of social change. In order to analyse the temporal-spatial relationship in the novels, I apply Bakhtin’s theory of the ‘chronotope’ (time-space). As a chronotope of encounter, the chronotope of ‘The Road’ provides a way to navigate Ballard’s novels by eliciting attention to the highways, motorways and overpasses which dominate these narrative worlds. Focusing on how ‘The Road’ is re-accentuated in Ballard’s novels as the auto-system, this thesis will explore how speed is conducive to a distancing of self and surface. In doing so, it will invoke Paul Virilio’s theory of dromology, ‘the logic of speed’. Ultimately, it will show that, as the protagonists of the texts try to navigate alternate paths through space and time they exemplify Accelerationist concerns by drawing attention to destination. I will argue that, while Bakhtin’s chronotope can be applied to Ballard’s novels, they suggest that the chronotope has become infused with notions of speed, effecting not only a change in velocity but accelerating a change on the level of the individual who travels the road.

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