An Eye-Tracking Study on the Taboo Censorship in EFL Materials: The Case of Attention and Cognitive Load
Keywords:EFL, eye tracking, taboo, cognitive load
ELT publishers and material designers recently excluded “pig-related visuals” in language learning materials which were to be released for Muslim and Jewish learners as well as Islamic markets such as the Middle East and Gulf region (Flood, 2015; Harley, 2015). This study aimed to establish a scientific basis for this marketing strategy in a critical perspective by examining how eye movements and cognitive load were affected by taboo content. Eye movements of 40 Muslim language learners were recorded while they processed a reversed subtitled video containing taboo (pork) visuals. The eye- tracking analysis results showed no observable effect of pork content on revisiting counts and total fixation duration on image and subtitle areas. Similarly, pupillary response analysis also indicated no effect of taboo content on cognitive load. The results were discussed in terms of emotion-attention relationship, intercultural understanding, and transformative role of second language education.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Emrah Dolgunsoz
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