Re: [xmca] A request for guidance - private speech

From: mktostes <mktostes who-is-at>
Date: Fri May 02 2008 - 09:10:49 PDT

Dear Anne,

I am also working on private speech, so I am attaching my references related
especifically to private speech. Not all of the studies are related to
adults, but most of them are. You'll probably find more on Lantolf's page.
Ok, found it! Lantolf has provided a nice list, available at

Very briefly, as you are going to see, some aspects related to the
non-ocurrence of private speech are cultural factors (McCafferty, 1994;
Centeno-CortÚs, 2003); learners' learning styles (Centeno-CortÚs, 2003;
Saville-Troike, 1988); their psychological characteristics; sometimes the
environment, due to its predominant social or colaborative character and
also the social or cognitive orientantion of students, according to
(Saville-Troike, 1988). The approach used by the teacher can also inhibit
its emergence.

In my opinion, not only those aspects cause a certain problem in the
emergence of PV, but the question of 'training' students to use private
speech (or anything else) sounds too behavioristic. I think we could try to
create a classroom environment where PV is not marginalized and show
students that we, as teachers, are listening, paying attention to those
utterances and respond to them. Try to bring those utterances, which show a
dialogue the student is having with other voices, other utterances, into the
dialogue that is being established among the interlocutors in the classroom.
What I think we could try to do is work towards a more reflexive approach
towards foreign languge learning.

And, speaking of deep waters, I do think that the issue of Private Speech
fits this category. I don't think that many of the studies I've reviewed
managed to really grasp the concept of egocentric speech and inner speech
Vygotsky developed. Also, many of the problems pinpointed by Flavell (1966)
and Diaz (1992) still persist. Not to mention other problems not addressed
by them, including not only how PV is conceived but how researchers conceive
language. At the same time, some researchers still show great influence from
cognitivism and some, a Piagetian influence. I'm not saying that we should
just throw away anything that is related to Piaget or Cognitivist approaches
(or whatever theory), but we have to carefully analyse if what we are using
is compatible with the concepts developed in the cultural-historical

Well, good luck!

Karin Quast

----- Original Message -----
From: "Adam Mendelson" <>
To: "'eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity'" <>
Sent: Friday, May 02, 2008 11:46 AM
Subject: RE: [xmca] A request for guidance

I suggest checking out
Lantolf, J. P., & Thorne, S. L. (2006). Sociocultural theory and the Genesis
of L2 Development. Oxford: Oxford Univeristy Press.

I don't have the book with me now, but I know that they review/mention at
least a couple empirical studies that address inner speech.

There may also be relevant work in
Lantolf, J. (Ed.). (2000). Sociocultural theory and second language
learning. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Good luck!


-----Original Message-----
From: [] On
Behalf Of anne radowick
Sent: Friday, May 02, 2008 7:24 AM
Subject: [xmca] A request for guidance

Dear Professors,

I have been on the side of the pool watching you all frolicking in the deep
waters. Can I ask you to come over in to the not-so-deep end for a moment?

I am trying to write a paper on private and inner speech in second language
learners, particularly adults. Perhaps I haven't worded my search requests
quite right up until now, but I am not finding an abundance of information
on adults. Would anyone happen to know in which direction I should turn to
find someone who has done any research on this topic? I would like to
compare the success in SLA between adults who are active producers of
private speech and those who don't seem to use it much, if at all. If there
is a clear advantage, can learners be trained to consciously produce more
private speech to enhance their SLL experience?

Any pointers you might be able to offer on this subject would be greatly

Very truly yours,

Anne Radowick
Inha University
Incheon, Korea

xmca mailing list

Received on Fri May 2 09:21 PDT 2008

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.8 : Sun Jun 01 2008 - 00:30:04 PDT