Presentation of local and international culture in current international English-language teaching textbooks

Jeeyoung Shin, Zohreh Eslami, Wen Chun Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

53 Citations (Scopus)


The place of culture in teaching English as an international language (EIL) is a complex issue, given the diversity of contexts in which English is currently being used globally. Building on a sociocultural perspective that language use is open to negotiation and is context-dependent, this paper argues that the design and content of English-language teaching (ELT) textbooks should reflect the multiple perspectives inherent in EIL. Findings from an analysis of the cultural content of seven series of internationally distributed ELT textbooks are reported. Our study showed that even though cultural aspects were proportionally diverse in each textbook series, inner circle cultural content still dominates most of the textbooks. Furthermore, cultural presentation still largely remains at the traditional knowledge-oriented level and does not engage learners in deep levels of reflection. The findings are discussed in light of existing studies, and some recommendations for future textbook writers and classroom practice are suggested.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)253-268
Number of pages16
JournalLanguage, Culture and Curriculum
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011
Externally publishedYes



  • Cultural content
  • EIL paradigm
  • ELT textbooks
  • ESL/EFL classroom
  • Intercultural communication
  • Textbook writers

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Linguistics and Language
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Education

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