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June 1995 - Issue No. #19 (p. 22)

English Language Textbooks Dealing with Global Issues

Publishers are invited to send in sample copies of new books relating to global issues.
Readers interested in writing book reviews should contact the editor

Making Peace

by Elaine Brooks & Len Fox (1995)

Cambridge University Press

This 280-page book, subtitled "A Reading/Writing/Thinking Text on Global Community", is aimed at advanced students of English and native English speakers who wish to improve their reading, writing and critical thinking skills. The text comprises 24 peace-oriented reading passages, each 2-5 pages in length, organized under six broad themes: (1) The State of the World; (2) Men and Women; (3) Children, Family and Education; (4) Cross-Cultural Encounters; (5) Spiritual Values; and (6) Working for a Better World. Topics include nuclear weapons, children and war, Third World poverty, environmental sustainability, gender stereotypes, inter-cultural understanding, social activism and feature writers such as Lester Brown, Martin Luther King, Rigoberta Menchu, Aung San Suu Kyi, Margaret Mead, Edward Hall and Al Gore. Each chapter includes key vocabulary, reading exercises and writing activities. The book aims to improve students' language skills while encouraging them to think about important issues of world peace and relate these to their own lives.

The Man Who Planted Trees

by Jean Giono & Diane Mowat (1993)

Kirihara / Oxford, Kirihara Shoten, 2-44-5 Koenji-minami, Suginami-ku, Tokyo 166 Tel: 03-3314-8181

This illustrated 40-page elementary-level EFL reading text tells the unique story of Elzeard Bouffier, a true-life Johnny Appleseed. By singlehandedly planting up to 30,000 trees a year over a period of 30 years from 1913 right through two world wars, Bouffier transformed a remote, barren, treeless corner of Europe into a rich, green paradise - an inspiring example of what one person can do to make a better world. The book's 5 chapters include vocabulary notes and comprehension questions. A teacher's guide with sample test is also included.

Note: The story can also be found online at: (Jan. 2007)

International News

by Yoshihiro Tanaka (1995)

Sanshusha Ltd, 1-5-34 Shimotani, Taito-ku, Tokyo 110 Tel: 03-3842-1711

This 95-page Japanese "newspaper English" textbook focuses on global issues as presented in current newspaper articles. The book's twenty units are grouped into ten categories: international politics, international disputes, domestic politics, international trade, world social problems, domestic social problems, mass media, science, sports and health. Specific issues covered include the G-7 summit, NATO, GATT, Bosnia, environmental issues, crime, unemployment, the population explosion, sexual harassment, bid-rigging, media bias and smoking. Each chapter features a 2-page article, Japanese notes, comprehension questions, vocabulary exercises and background information. A cassette is available separately.

Energy and Environment

by Peter Hodgson (1995)

Kinseido Ltd., 361 Yamabuki-cho, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 162

This 100-page university-level Japanese EFL reading text by an Oxford University scientist examines key global issues related to the environment. The book's 8 chapters cover the energy crisis, new energy sources, environment and health, destruction of the landscape, industrial waste, problems of developing countries, the threat of nuclear weapons, and our responsibility for the Earth. The back of the book gives Japanese vocabulary notes plus discussion questions for each chapter. A cassette is available separately.

English Now

by Ichiro Tanaka et. al. (1993)

Kairyudo Shuppan, 1-13-1 Mukagaoka, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 113 Tel: 03-5684-6115

This Ministry-approved 120-page illustrated Japanese junior high school text teaches basic English through a rich variety of global and peace education topics partly built around a 1991 Global Youth Conference held in Kyoto. Its 14 lessons include themes such as Earth Day, "Let's Stop World Hunger", the work of a Japanese peace corps worker in Ethiopia, Helen Keller, a Japanese woman mountain climber, a letter from Turkey, King Sejong and the invention of the Korean Hangul alphabet, sexism in English, and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Also included are peace songs and a chart of the word "peace" written in 21 languages.


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Kip A. Cates, Tottori University, Koyama, Tottori City, JAPAN 680-8551
E-mail: Work Tel/Fax: 0857-31-5650