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Teaching and learning about Chinese culture: pupils’ and teachers’ experiences of Chinese community schooling in the UK

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Sara Ganassin



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Routledge, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


This article investigates how pupils and teachers in two Chinese community schools in the UK understand Chinese culture as regards the classroom teaching and other activities offered by the schools such as the celebration of festivals. Working from a social constructionist perspective and building on the work of Adrian Holliday, the study explores both how participants understand and negotiate culture, and what processes inform their constructions. Overall, this study demonstrates complexity in pupils’ and teachers’ understandings of Chinese culture and how such complexity lies in participants’ personal trajectories and on the significance they attribute to Chinese culture in their lives.Il presente articolo discute come gli alunni e gli insegnanti di due scuole di comunità (community schools) cinesi nel Regno Unito elaborino il concetto di ‘cultura’ in relazione all’insegnamento e alle attività offerte dalle scuole come, ad esempio, la celebrazione delle festività tradizionali. Usando una prospettiva socio-construzionista e seguendo la cornice teorica sviluppata da Adrian Holliday, lo studio esplora come i partecipanti costruiscano e negozino il concetto di ‘cultura’ e quali siano i processi che stanno alla base delle costruzioni. Complessivamente, questo studio dimostra come gli alunni e gli insegnanti interiorizzino in modo complesso il concetto di cultura cinese e come tale complessità derivi dalle loro traiettorie personali e dall’importanza che tale cultura riveste nelle loro vite.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ganassin S

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Language and Intercultural Communication

Year: 2019

Volume: 19

Issue: 2

Pages: 167-183

Online publication date: 14/08/2018

Acceptance date: 16/07/2018

Date deposited: 18/08/2018

ISSN (print): 1470-8477

ISSN (electronic): 1747-759X

Publisher: Routledge


DOI: 10.1080/14675986.2015.993250


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