The Effect of Teaching Literature on EFL Students' Pragmatic Competence
AbstractA language learner can derive from the inclusion of literature in the educational curriculum for language learning. This study investigates the importance of literary discourse in developing the foreign language learners' pragmatic competence. Two sections of ninth stage students from Al-Jazeerah Schools in Amman Private Directorate of Education have been randomly sampled in the study. Students were then assigned into two groups, the control group and the experimental group. Both groups were administered an identical pre-test which showed a uniformity in the results with insignificant variation. A syllabus based on literary texts including all the genres of English literature was designed for the experimental group. For the control group, core language textbooks covering the same components were selected for instruction. Both groups were instructed for a full semester . By the end of the semester, they were given a post-test. The results of the study suggested that the literature syllabus sounded good for developing the learner's pragmatic competence , in the sense that there was a significant difference in the performance of the two groups, in favor of the experimental group. The findings also drew the instructors , curriculum developers, and course designers' attention towards integrating more literature centered language activities in the process of language teaching. Finally, the study proposed some pedagogical implications related to literature-based syllabus to general design. Key words: Literature, pragmatic competence, ninth grade, authenticity.