Review Taking Chinese to the world: Language, culture and identity in Confucius Institute teachers (a review)

original work by WEI YE reviewed by BARRY TOMALIN

This is a very useful piece of research conducted by Wei Ye, which will be very helpful to teachers and students of international culture and to those interested in the use of education as a tool of soft power, particularly in the context of the Chinese Confucius Institutes and the Confucius classrooms movement. Above all, however, it will be of value to teachers and administrators in schools and colleges and HR and development managers in companies and corporations, concerned to help overseas students and workers acclimatise to conditions in a new country. Wei Ye was a Confucius Institute teacher in the US and also in the UK and this book is a study of Confucius institutes and Confucius classroom teachers in the UK. The book divides into 8 chapters, beginning with an explanation of the Confucius Institute and Confucius classrooms initiative, going on to examining the theory and practice of ‘cultural sojourning’, using particularly the three-fold principle of French sociologist Pierre Bourdieu, Habitus, capital and field, and continuing with a number of group and personal case studies before drawing detailed conclusions and recommendations for host country organisations to ease acclimatisation.

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