English FAL Matric Revision: Expressing naming, inclusion, and exclusion

Revision Notes for CAPS Grade 12 – Mathematical Literacy

Topic: Critical Language Awareness – Expressing Naming, Inclusion, and Exclusion


Critical Language Awareness (CLA) is the ability to recognize and use language to express specific meanings or viewpoints. This topic is crucial in understanding how language influences thought and perception, and how it can be used to include or exclude different groups. This understanding is essential for developing clear and effective communication, avoiding bias, and promoting inclusion.

Essential Learning Objectives

  1. Understand the concept of Critical Language Awareness.
  2. Recognize and analyze how language choices express naming, inclusion, and exclusion.
  3. Identify strategies to avoid bias and promote inclusion through language.

Key Points

  1. Definition of CLA:
  2. CLA involves understanding the power of language in shaping meaning and perceptions.
  3. It helps in identifying bias, stereotypes, and generalizations in texts.

  4. Language Choices:

  5. Language choices reflect the author’s viewpoint and can include or exclude certain groups.
  6. Words like “we”, “they”, “us”, “them” can divide people into groups, reflecting inclusion or exclusion.

  7. Denotation and Connotation:

  8. Denotation: The literal or dictionary meaning of a word.
  9. Connotation: The ideas or feelings that a word invokes beyond its literal meaning.

  10. Emotive and Manipulative Language:

  11. This type of language is designed to provoke specific emotions in readers or listeners.
  12. Examples include words with strong positive or negative connotations.

  13. Expressing Viewpoints, Attitudes, and Assumptions:

  14. Clues in texts reveal the author’s attitudes and assumptions, influencing their inclusion or exclusion of certain groups.

Real-World Applications

  1. Political Speeches:
  2. Politicians often use inclusive language to unite people or exclusive language to highlight differences.
  3. Example: “Our community” vs. “Their community.”

  4. Media and Advertising:

  5. Advertisements may use language to target specific demographic groups inclusively or to exclude others based on stereotypes.
  6. Example: “You deserve the best” vs. “Only for the elite.”

Common Misconceptions and Errors

  1. Generalizations:
  2. Assuming that language affects everyone in the same way—people have different interpretations based on their experiences.
  3. To avoid this, always consider the context and audience of your communication.

  4. Ignoring Connotations:

  5. Overlooking the emotional impact of words can lead to misinterpretation.
  6. Always assess both denotation and connotation while choosing words.

Practice and Review

  1. Practice Questions:
  2. Identify the connotative meaning in the following pairs:
    • “Slim” vs. “Skinny”
    • “Curious” vs. “Inquisitive”
  3. Rewrite the sentence to avoid exclusion: “Only boys understand video games.”

  4. Examination Tips:

  5. Look for keywords such as “we,” “they,” “always,” “never” which often indicate bias or generalization.
  6. Manage your exam time efficiently by quickly identifying these keywords and analyzing their impact on the text’s meaning.

Connections and Extensions

  1. Interdisciplinary Links:
  2. History: Understand how historical texts used language to include or exclude different groups and the impact thereof.
  3. Business Studies: Learn how companies use inclusive language in marketing to appeal to diverse demographic groups.

  4. Real-World Implications:

  5. Using inclusive language in professional and personal settings can foster better relationships and understanding among diverse groups.
  6. Helps in creating policies and communications that are free from bias, ensuring fairness and equality.

Summary and Quick Review

  • Critical Language Awareness is essential to understand the impact of language choices.
  • Denotation and Connotation help in analyzing the deeper meanings of words.
  • Emotive language can manipulate the audience’s feelings, often reflected through inclusive or exclusive language choices.
  • Practice identifying and revising biased language to enhance inclusion and reduce misinterpretations.

Additional Resources

  1. Online Articles and Videos:
  2. “The Power of Language” on YouTube for visual and auditory learners.
  3. Articles on linguistic inclusivity on academic platforms like JSTOR.
  4. Educational Platforms:
  5. Khan Academy for courses on language and its impact on society.
  6. Ted-Ed for short, informative videos on various language-related topics.

By utilizing these revision notes and additional resources, you can deepen your understanding of Critical Language Awareness and effectively apply it to both your academic studies and real-world interactions.

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