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23-34) 24 1/23/06, 11:14 AM Conceptual framework 25 EFL vs. ESL: The prevailing view In the middle-to-later years of the twentieth century, it became apparent to the ELT profession that the situations of ‘non-native’ users of English around the world were not all the same. , who were taking up English as their language for all necessary business and most if not all social interaction, to the point that the language of ‘the old country’ was set aside, with children not being encouraged to learn it, or even being forbidden to do so.

Suggested activities Read the following paragraph and discuss the questions that follow (Bolton, Kingsley, 2000, The sociolinguistics of Hong Kong and the space for Hong Kong English. World Englishes 19(3), 265–85): In this article, Bolton applies the defining characteristics suggested in Butler (1997) to define a variety of English to determine if Hong Kong English, one of the world Englishes, is a variety, and goes on to say that the discussion of whether the ‘criteria’ are sufficiently persuasive or powerful to make a distinct ‘variety’ evident is less important than ‘the desire to create a new space for discussion and discourse on Hong Kong English.

The field of English studies, whether in the first or the second diaspora, is fraught with debates and controversies. ’ rage, and not only specialists but everyone active in areas such as politics, academia and media, has an opinion. Although most discussions tend to present issues in terms of binary categories such as standard vs. non-standard, native vs. non-native, British vs. American, and so on, the patterns that the global spread of English presents are much more complex than such an either-or view can realistically or usefully handle.

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