Vol. 61 No. 1 (2023)

Multimodality in Epistemological Foreign Language Research? Two Case Studies in the Field of German as a Foreign and Second Language

Pages: 107-125



This article aims to elaborate on the epistemological interest of cultural studies for German as a foreign and second language and, simultaneously, to point out the limitations of the current focus on certain modes. We intend to broaden this focus by highlighting the connectivity of the epistemological interest to multimodal research using two relevant case studies. The first case considers music videos and their associated comments on YouTube, examining how patterns of freedom are negotiated. The second considers textbooks for the so-called cultural orientation of immigrants to Germany and examines one of the first textbooks developed for this purpose through the lens of meaning-making of the Holocaust. Both case studies were selected on the basis of existing doctoral projects of the authors. The analyses follow Bateman, Wildfeuer, and Hiippala, but take into account the extensive history of multimodal studies. The case studies exemplify that restricting our study to only one mode would have undermined the results.


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