Pragmatic strategies and negotiation of meaning in ELF talk
The global spread of English and the different forms and shapes that the language has taken in the most diverse settings has contributed, especially in the last decades, to develop a peculiar sociolinguistic phenomenon which has had implications on a wide range of areas; linguis- tic, political, socio-cultural, ideological as well as pedagogical. Speakers from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds have increasingly come into contact on a global scale and have adopted English as a contact language, a lingua franca, in contexts where the language is used for vari- ous communicative purposes. What communicative strategies and discourse practices speakers, belonging to different linguistic backgrounds, use to facilitate the achievement of mutual compre- hension, will be drawn attention to in the present paper. The need to re-examine what it means to learn and teach a global modern language from a different methodological perspective will be highlighted. It is therefore suggested that English as a lingua franca, ELF, needs to be investigated as a field of enquiry which requires empirical analysis, not only from a linguistic perspective, but also from a sociolinguistic one.