English Language Education in Iraq: International Advantage or Imperialist Agenda? Open Access

Hassoun, Mariam (Spring 2020)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/gq67js30r?locale=en


English is becoming an increasingly important skill in today’s globalized world, a shift disrupting the global educational order. English medium instruction (EMI) provisions have expanded rapidly on a global scale in the last 10 years. Educational systems worldwide are integrating the English language into their classrooms in different ways, rushing to prepare students to participate in the global economy. This thesis uses Iraq as a case study to examine English education’s role in society and argues that English language education policy in Iraq is viewed as an extension of national economic and security goals, to the detriment of local communities. In the Iraqi case, a lack of language planning in a centralized policy-making process has created a system in which English’s presence in national curricula and tests increases socioeconomic inequality and removes individuals from their local contexts. Freire, Dewey, Djebar, Piller, Petrovic, and Phillipson are called upon in an interdisciplinary paper that includes a literature review, literary critique, and policy recommendation to draw upon the nuance necessary to eliminate injustice in additional, non-native language instruction programs.

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

I | Introduction _______________________________________________________________1

Methodology _________________________________________________________________ 6

Scope and Positionality__________________________________________________________9

II | Language Education Theory in Philosophy and Literature_______________________12

Literature Review ____________________________________________________________ 12

Djebar, Saadawi, and the Language of the Oppressor _________________________________26

Excuse Me by Rola Saad_______________________________________________________ 34


III | English in the Global Classroom ____________________________________________36

IV | English in Iraq___________________________________________________________46

V | Conclusions and Recommendations __________________________________________53

VI | Appendix _______________________________________________________________57

VII | Figures ________________________________________________________________58

VIII | Bibliography ___________________________________________________________59

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