Jürgen Jaspers

Jürgen Jaspers

Université Libre de Bruxelles 
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Jürgen Jaspers is a sociolinguist and professor in Dutch linguistics at the Université Libre de Bruxelles (ULB), Belgium. He is interested in language-in-education, classroom interaction, the ethnography of urban multilingualism, language policy, and language ideology.

Talk Information:

Explaining teacher behaviour in the multilingual classroom
May 20, 2022 | 9:00 AM

The literature on language-in-education is generally populated by two prototypical teachers (critical ‘agents of change’ who challenge monolingual ideologies and the conservative ‘servants of the state’ who impose these) who symbolise approaches that scholars find (un)desirable. In this talk I wish to address that this (1) causes less archetypal teachers to fall off the scientific radar; (2) invites theoretically incompatible views of ideology; (3) intimates that teachers must adopt what scholars find preferable. Drawing on ethnographic research in different Dutch medium schools in Brussels I suggest that the usual accounts in the literature may be inadequate for explaining inconsistent, contradictory teacher behaviour, and I reflect on what this means for the dialogue between scholars and teachers and the public at large.

For further reading: Jürgen Jaspers & Kirsten Rosiers (2019): Soft power: teachers’ friendly implementation of a severe monolingual policy, Journal of Multilingual and Multicultural Development. https://doi.org/10.1080/01434632.2019.1585864