Theatre in the Acquisition of Intercultural Communicative Competence: The Creation of a Multilingual Corpus of Dramatic Texts for the Training of Future Linguistic Mediators
In the field of second language learning, it is increasingly important to develop an intercultural communicative competence in order to reach an extensive knowledge of the foreign language, not only from a linguistic point of view but also as far as culture and society are concerned. Starting from this assumption, this paper aims at answering the question of whether such a complex and fundamental competence as the intercultural communicative one can be acquired in the classroom context. According to the literature in this field, through classroom activities students may only develop their (self)observation ability in order to better understand culture(s). However, we maintain that the introduction of specific dramatic activities in the classroom context can help students to develop their empathic attitude and improve their cognitive and emotional competence, which are fundamental aspects in an intercultural perspective. In this paper we intend to present a three-phase research project, conducted by the Department of Interdisciplinary Studies in Translation, Languages and Cultures of the University of Bologna, Forlì, on linguistic mediators' training and the teaching/acquisition of the intercultural communicative competence through theatre. The first phase of our project foresees the creation of a multilingual corpus of contemporary dramatic texts, following the criteria of the cultural and social domains described by Balboni (1999). This corpus will be used to create language teaching units for a course in linguistic mediation, through which students can start from the observation and comprehension of their own culture and then develop their empathic attitude, accepting diversity and avoiding stereotypes and misunderstandings. Secondly, the teaching model devised in the first phase will be tested on students, with a subsequent analysis and evaluation of the results. Eventually, a CD-Rom with the corpus of selected dramatic texts and an educational guide for teachers and students will be published.
Keywords: Intercultural Communicative Competence, Cognitive, Empathic and Emotional Competence, Linguistic Mediation, Second Language Learning, Theatre
María Isabel Fernández García
Researcher, Department of Interdisciplinary Studies in Translation, Languages and Cultures, University of Bologna at Forlì, University of Bologna at Forlì
Maria Giovanna Biscu
Department of Interdisciplinary Studies in Translation, Languages and Cultures, University of Bologna at Forlì, University of Bologna at Forlì