• In China!

    by  • September 4, 2011 • China, travel

    While Sarah is enjoying the domestic comforts of Downton Abbey, I’m in the sweltering heat of Southern China trying to get my dissertation proposal done and get started on my research. Progress is slow, but I think I’ll get there in the end.

    I arrived in Beijing on August 19 (or was the the 20th?) and spent a few days at the Ming Courtyard hostel, which I’d recommend to anybody interested in seeing Beijing’s famed hutongs. To be honest, though, I had trouble figuring out what was so great about hutongs (basically alleys), since they don’t seem that different from several other places I’ve seen in China. Another plus about the Ming Courtyard is its proximity to Beijing’s most popular restaurant street, Gui Jie. I didn’t go to any of them, but I think Sarah and I should go there next time we’re in Beijing.

    I then spent about a week in the Haidian district for the 16th World Congress of Applied Linguistics, where I presented a paper as part of a panel I organized called “Emerging Perspectives on Chinglish and China English.” Several of the panelists couldn’t make it, so it was just me and Oliver Radtke, who gave a very fun and interesting presentation about the “Chinglish” on signs in China, which was a nice counterpoint to my super boring academic presentation about the application of linguistic acceptability judgments to world Englishes research.

    After that, I flew to Ningbo, where I am now living on the campus of the University of Nottingham (really!) from whence I hope to launch my research about English teachers’ perceptions of the ‘acceptability’ of academic writing produced by Chinese university students.

    I have a few pictures (not many, since I always forget my camera), but the internet is pretty slow and I haven’t been able to figure out how to put them on here nicely yet. You can see a few random pictures above. I’ll try again later, though. Just thought I’d let y’all know what’s up with me! More soon.


    Joel reads and writes a lot, and teaches, and tries to get you to believe that grammar is a big deal in a different way than you thought. He also plays the drums.