Why not LFC


Włodzimierz Sobkowiak (Poznań)


[entire paper as an MS Word .doc file]

 [you may also view/download a PowerPoint presentation here (in Polish)]


A new pronunciation standard has recently been proposed as a viable goal for foreign learners of English to reach, that of Lingua Franca Core (Jenkins 2000b).  LFC would be the pronunciation of English as an International Language (EIL) or English as a Lingua Franca (ELF).  The project for a 'realistic' pronunciation syllabus for International English has gained wide support in many EFL circles.  Yet, it is marred by a number of faults and weaknesses.  In this paper arguments are provided against LFC-like standards/syllabuses.  The arguments come from a wide range of considerations: (1) philosophical: axiology does not follow from ontology, (2) logical: fallacies of inference (3) ideological: political correctness (anti-linguistic-imperialism and the like) does not serve objective scientific judgment, (4) (socio)linguistic: speech is used for much more than sheer communication, (5) pedagogical: loosening didactic standards must not, post-hoc, be excused and encouraged, (6) psychological: native-like pronunciation is recognized by learners as an asset in itself.  They have been developed in reaction to the writings and pronouncements of the main proponents of LFC pronunciation: Jennifer Jenkins, Barbara Seidlhofer, and others.