The Institute for Chinese Studies presents "The Centenary of the May Fourth Movement" Lecture Series:
Visiting Scholar, International College of Chinese Studies
Fujian Normal University
Lecture title: Pedagogical Grammar Found in 18th and 19th Century Western Chinese Teaching Materials
Flyer: Jianfeng Cai Flyer
Abstract: 18th and 19th century Chinese teaching materials written by Westerners, including missionaries, record many aspects of the Chinese language, such as its phonetics, vocabulary and grammar. Utilizing these precious historical resources, we will explore the language used during this period and understand how it developed. These materials are of particular importance since, as they were mostly designed to reach non-native speakers, they more accurately demonstrate methods of teaching Chinese as a second language, particularly in regards to grammar, than similar materials written by and for native speakers of Chinese. These methods include: 1) Sorting grammar points in a way that better conforms to the rules of second language acquisition, 2) Interpreting grammar rules from multiple layers, in fuller detail, 3) Comparing grammar rules to rules in the learners' first language to make it easier to understand, and 4) Offering numerous examples for learners to imitate. Exploring these 18th and 19th century approaches to teaching grammar can not only contribute to the study of the idiosyncrasies of Chinese grammar, but also promote the further development of textbooks for second-language learners.
Bio: Jianfeng Cai is a lecturer in Chinese Language at Fujian Normal University’s International College of Chinese Studies and is currently a visiting scholar in OSU’s Department of East Asian Languages and Literatures. She earned her Ph.D. in Applied Linguistics from Sun Yet-Sen University and is a 2014 recipient of the 1st Award of Teaching Achievement in Fujian Province for her contribution to the project: “3 in 1 Model to Cultivate and Improve the Integrated Chinese Ability of Foreign Students.” Dr. Cai’s research interests include Chinese language pedagogy, second language acquisition, and Chinese teaching materials. She has also published several articles on the acquisition of interrogative sentences by native speakers.
This event is supported by a U.S. Department of Education Title VI grant to The Ohio State University East Asian Studies Center.