affective stance (see Ochs; Ochs & Schiefflin) – the emotions/emotional world attributed to a language learner’s target language, often more closely related to experiences learning or using the language, such as failing in a learning environment or succeeding in an English-speaking community.
This is directly related to and inspired by the concept of imagined community, but more focused in its examination of the role of emotion in other-language acquisition and performance.
For example, I have always avoided learning German because of its relationship with Holocaust-era Germany and the yearly brainwashing about the violent massacres of this period in Hebrew School. I’m not proud of this bias, but nonetheless the affect I attribute to the language (violence, negativity, opposition) has prevented me from placing value in learning or using it.
In this project, affective stance will be constructed via the adjectives and metaphors employed in participant-researcher narratives and analyses. A perfect example of attributed English language affect by the Japanese participants in this project is their use of distance words such as near (Japanese) and far (English) and their explanations that this distance has an impact on the emotions of their imagined English worlds, and this contributes to the push/pull ideas about their linguistic communities.