ASIAN JOURNAL OF ENGLISH LANGUAGE STUDIES
VOLUME 9, DECEMBER 2021
We are pleased to announce the release of the ninth volume of the Asian Journal of English Language Studies (AJELS), the official international, peer-reviewed, and open access journal of the Department of English of the University of Santo Tomas (Manila, the Philippines).
Volume 9 features six articles out of the 32 papers submitted to the journal by the authors coming from different parts of the globe in 2021. The relatively small number of approved manuscripts suggests that AJELS pays enormous attention to the quality of articles it accepts for publication. Moreover, AJELS remains to be a preferred avenue for dissemination of knowledge and research findings, which attests to its untarnished academic reputation.
The first article by Ryoma Oda and Camilla Vizconde (University of Santo Tomas) examines the impact of the mother tongue-based multilingual education (MTB MLE) policy on the language use and the language attitudes of 5th graders in Pampanga, the Philippines. The second paper written by Richard Oandasan (Midway Colleges, Inc.) investigates linguistic politeness and power relations in request emails sent by the employees to the chief executive officer of a higher education institution in the Philippines. The third article written by Nerissa Ogardo-Zara (University of the Philippines) shares an interesting study on the social semiotics of quarantine checkpoint signages for COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines. From the findings, the proponent draws further insights for developing disaster literacy. The fourth article was written by six senior high school students who had genuine interest in forensic linguistics (FL): Alicia Cassandra Ablian, Raphaela Benzon, Jewel Abyjah Caña, Sofia Doreen Ceniza, Jessica Anne Morales, and Anna Laeticia Reyes (Manila Science High School). These students worked collaboratively with one of the few FL researchers in the Philippines, Rachelle Ballesteros-Lintao (University of Santo Tomas), when they explored the language of evaluation in the Maguindanao massacre case. The fifth article falls under the domain of migration linguistics. Mikhail Alic Go (Tamagawa University) and Ariane Borlongan, Founder and Head of the Migration Linguistics Unit at the Tokyo University of Foreign Studies (Japan), interestingly present a linguistic biography of an English-dependent Filipino migrant in Japan. The sixth and final article included in this volume written by Ronald Hennessy Esguerra (Ateneo de Manila University) endeavors to analyze the linguistic resistance and counter-colonization in the narratives of three Philippine short stories in English.
Publishing six papers at this point is an enviable accomplishment. Despite the uncertainties brought about by the global pandemic and other unforeseen challenges, AJELS is able to feature studies and investigations which language enthusiasts and language researchers may find timely, relevant, and useful.
AJELS would like to express its sincerest gratitude to the following academics for painstakingly reviewing the papers sent to them despite their very busy schedule: Francisco Dumanig (University of Hawaii at Hilo), Xinghua Liu (Shanghai Jiao Tong University), Catherine Young (Summer Institute of Linguistics), Michael Tanangkingsing (Taipei Tech Department of English), Supong Tangkiengsirisin (Thammasat University), Mark Ulla (Walailak University), Carolyn Castro (Montgomery College), Aiden Yeh (Wenzao Ursuline University of Languages), Lee Kooi Cheng (National University of Singapore), Shaomin Zhang (Guandong University of Foreign Studies), Resty Cena (University of Alberta), Rochelle Irene Lucas (De La Salle University), Ruanni Tupas (University College London), Shirley Dita (De La Salle University), Ariane Borlongan (Tokyo University of Foreign Studies), Katrina Topacio (University of Santo Tomas), Remedios Miciano (De La Salle University), Andrew Moody (University of Macau), and Roger Barnard (University of Waikato).
The tenth volume of AJELS is in the offing, and it marks the tenth year of the journal in circulation. The members of the editorial board look forward to receiving and publishing papers which tackle more thought-provoking topics and more contentious issues relevant to English language studies.
On a final note, when the Department, through the founding Editor-in-Chief, Marilu Rañosa-Madrunio started the journal, it was envisioned that it will be a key venue for important works on English language studies not only in the Philippines but in the region. The last decade has seen the publication of many works in the journal which pushed the boundaries of the discipline and rethought paradigms. A more fruitful next decade of the journal is therefore hoped for and envisaged.
ALEJANDRO S. BERNARDO, Ph.D.
Editor-in-Chief, Asian Journal of English Language Studies
Nanung epektu na? (What’s the effect?): impact of mother tongue-based multilingual education (MTB-MLE) policy on language use and language attitudes of 5th graders in Pampanga, the Philippines
In 2012, the Mother Tongue-Based Multilingual Education (MTB-MLE) policy, which advocates the use of mother tongues as the language of instruction from kindergarten to year three, was implemented in the Philippines. However, issues regarding the impact of this policy on the language use and the language attitudes of the students exposed to it remain unexplored. Utilizing the Domain Analysis Framework of Fishman (1968) and a quantitative design, this study examined the language use and the language attitudes of Kapampangan 5th graders in relation to the MTB-MLE policy. The results show that Kapampangan 5th graders use the Filipino and the Kapampangan…
A pragmatic investigation of linguistic politeness and power relations in request emails
Communication has evolved over the years. The advent of technology has mediated communication thus bringing about new media such as emails. This computer mediated communication has continuously gained the attention of language scholars, and, more recently, most of the studies on emails analyzed politeness and impoliteness as marked by the appropriateness of the sender’s language in various contexts. However, there seems to be a dearth of literature which analyzes emails in the workplace, especially in the Philippine setting. Hence, this study examined the presence (or the absence thereof) of Brown and Levinson’s (1978, 1987) positive politeness strategies and/or negative strategies…
Social semiotics of quarantine checkpoint signages for COVID-19 pandemic in the Philippines: Insights for disaster literacy
The Philippine government’s narrative of war against the “unseen” enemy uses order and control as a disaster risk reduction response to address the current health emergency. Because quarantine checkpoints have become the physical manifestations of this narrative, it is important to study how they negotiate identities and behaviors to reinforce order and control. This investigation was undertaken through a multimodal analysis of 34 sample images of checkpoint signages placed all over the country during the first months of lockdown. An inventory of elements and an analysis of semiotic resources in the linguistic, typographical, and layout modes of the design were…
Exploring the language of evaluation in the Maguindanao massacre case
Language is central in the development and implementation of the law. Because laws are constructed using language, the processes of the law are mediated through language (Gibbons, 1999). Anesa (2011) explains that language can also be used as a criterion for evaluating witnesses, as well as for determining the credibility of narratives. This study analyzed the significantly distinct evaluative items from the testimonies of three direct witnesses in the Maguindanao massacre case. The testimonies of the three direct witnesses consisting of 17,905 words served as the study corpus. Using the lens of appraisal theory (Martin & White, 2005), the behavior…
A linguistic biography of an English-dependent Filipino migrant in Japan
In this article, we present a linguistic biography of an English-dependent Filipino migrant in Japan. His multinational company stationed him in its Japan office even if he is not proficient in Japanese. He moves to Japan with almost no knowledge of Japanese, and we document his struggles, and, in particular, his language issues during his posting in Japan. We reflect on his experience and provide a discussion on how many other migrant workers may have similar experience as his. We end this article by providing recommendations as to how migrant workers could be supported in their destination countries.
Linguistic resistance and counter-colonization in the narratives of Philippine short stories in English
In this paper, I will try to establish that linguistic resistance can be a form of counter- colonialism, and, at the same time, a form of colonizing the colonizers through their own language. Counter-colonialism is seen in how English was utilized for the advantage of both and, most of all, in the dramatic turn of events in colonizing the colonizers. In the case of the Philippines, it came into contact with American colonization, which is now evident in the use of the English language particularly in education and in the way many Filipinos speak and write. This appropriation and use…