Tuesday, August 5, 2008

((((((((((( Sensitive Topic )))))))))))

I really enjoy making my English teaching videos, there is no doubt about that, but with my latest video I have come across a difficult situation. I want to talk about the changing attitudes towards certain English words and the ways in which they can be interpreted. Over the past few years we have become more sensitive in the way we use certain words and phrases.

This type of censure is called 'Political Correctness'. In my latest video I wanted to give examples of words which could cause offence. But how could I possibly do this without causing offence too? I'm very aware that this is a sensitive subject, especially when talking about ethnic background and religious beliefs. For the first time ever, I have actually stopped filming a lesson halfway through. I'm not even sure if I will ever finish it. I really want to tackle more serious issues in my lessons, as well as focusing on the functional side of the language itself.

I will have to think very carefully about whether to continue with this lesson or not. It is quite ironic that I have become a victim of political correctness, while all I'm trying to do is give a balanced over-view of the whole process. I do not want to make it too simplistic, for fear of seeming patronising, while at the same time, I do not want to make it too harsh, for fear of offending my viewers.

This certainly is a sensitive topic!


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Anonymous said...

Hello Mr Duncan
Firstly, many thanks from English Language Learneres , really we have got a good outcome from your lessons. Secondly, regarding your post , in my opinion , for education purposes , there is no restriction in dealing with politics or sensitive topics unless it is not true or may harm the others.

RainBow From Saudi Arabia

Anonymous said...

hello Mister Duncan,
Go ahead with this lesson. Don't strain yoursef, i am sure you will not offend any of your viewers, i am one of them and i am ready to learn more from you!

Anonymous said...

Hi Mr Duncan
I can understand your fear when you are next to deal with this kind of subject. What I see is that having this kind of concern made you a good person to talk about political correctness. You seem to be a very sensitive person and I think you will find a good way to go.
Good luck! I will be waiting for your next video.
Leonardo from Brazil