Ideologies of English in Japan: the perspective of policy and pedagogy

Seargeant, Philip (2008). Ideologies of English in Japan: the perspective of policy and pedagogy. Language Policy, 7(2) pp. 121–142.




This paper examines the ideologies of language which underpin mainstream applied linguistic research and educational policy generation for English language teaching in Japan. Over the last 30 years a burgeoning literature has devoted itself to the task of researching and directing English language education in Japan, but has, by its own admission, had little success in effecting much change in what it perceives as a system incompatible with effective language learning. By surveying prominent academic studies on this topic and analysing these with reference to the policy reforms with which they interact, the paper makes explicit the linguistic and socio-political assumptions upon which this work is based and suggests that a critical awareness of these ideologies can assist in the production of sustainable language regulation.

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