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How do you revise a conversation textbook designed for American immigrants and international students in the United States for high school English language learners in Vietnam? Carefully!
Naturally, the new version of “Compelling Conversations – Vietnam: Speaking Exercises for Vietnamese Learners of Englishand Quotations on Timeless Topics” will emphasize aspects of Vietnamese culture, avoid taboo subjects, and include local folk sayings and proverbs. The chapter called, “Driving Cars” becomes “Riding Motorbikes.” Other chapters get deleted altogether. Religious quotes are lost and some touchy questions remain unasked. So it goes – even in the 21st century.
Today, after weeks of collecting proverbs, talking with EFL teachers in Vietnam, and editing my original ESL for a particular EFL audience, I have a close to finished version. I feel quite satisfied with Compelling Conversations for English Language Learners in Vietnam. The new edition will be out within a month!