2004
Volume 26, Issue 2
  • ISSN: 1384-5845
  • E-ISSN: 2352-1171

Abstract

Abstract

As a result of growing mobility and migration flows, the number of non-native speakers of Dutch in Belgium and the Netherlands have gradually increased over the past decades and so have the number of people enrolled in Dutch as a Second Language education. While there is huge variation in the profiles of these non-native speakers, they almost exclusively have in common that their Dutch sounds, in some way and at some stage, accented. In line with worldwide trends in foreign language teaching, the pronunciation goal in Dutch as a Second Language education has shifted from native-like to intelligible. Indeed, the notion of intelligibility has become prominent in language teaching and assessment. In this paper, we discuss the complexity of this notion and set it off against related terms like ‘comprehensibility’ and ‘foreign accent’. Through a literature review, we argue that intelligibility is an interactional and context-sensitive phenomenon: it is as much a responsibility of the speaker as it is of the listener or conversational partner(s) in general, whose attitudes will have an impact on the intelligibility and thus on the conversational flow and communicative success. After reviewing literature on the intelligibility of Dutch as a Second Language, we end by formulating some promising lines for future research.

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2021-10-01
2021-10-27
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