Volume 16, Issue 2
  • ISSN 1387-6740
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9935
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Cross-cultural and second/foreign language (L2) studies on oral narratives have suggested that one’s native language and culture affect discourse production in an L2 and have detected areas of difficulty for L2 learners in producing extended discourse. However, written narrative has received less attention, although it can provide rich data on cross-cultural differences and hold important implications for L2 literacy acquisition and pedagogy. This study was designed to investigate culturally preferred written discourse styles and their effects on L2 writing of personal narratives. It explored cross-cultural differences in the use of narrative structural features including evaluation between first language written narratives produced by native speakers of American English and first- and second-language narratives written by Koreans learning English. Differences in first language narrative styles were used to explain how Korean EFL learners’ narrative discourse in English could vary from native English speakers’ discourse norms. Participants were Korean adult EFL (English as a Foreign Language) learners and American native-English speakers in the U.S. The findings show that specifically Korean cultural strategies were evident in the Korean English learners’ English narrative discourse rather than the preferred discourse style of the target language and culture. The findings hold implications for L2 writing pedagogy and L2 training in discourse production.


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