Cat In The Rain Full Text

Topics: Linguistics, Second language, Language acquisition Pages: 98 (26210 words) Published: November 7, 2014
Masaryk University
Faculty of Arts

Department of English
and American Studies

Teaching English Language
and Literature for Secondary Schools

Hana Tichá

Cat in the Rain:
The suitability of an authentic literary work for the intermediate English classroom

Master’s Diploma Thesis

Supervisor: James Edward Thomas, M.A.


I declare that I have worked on this thesis independently,
using only the primary and secondary sources listed in the bibliography.

Author’s signature

I would like to thank my supervisor, James Thomas, for his guidance and support during my research. Table of Contents
Chapter One: Texts in the classroom4
Invented texts5
Chapter Two: Authenticity of classroom texts8
The benefits of studying authentic texts12
Authenticity and content12
Authenticity and ideology16
Authenticity and motivation17
Chapter Three: Literature in ELT19
Challenges of literary text19
Benefits of using literary texts22
Chapter Four: Reading and deriving meaning from text25
Chapter Five: Cat in the Rain – analysis and implications31 Top-down perspective31
Meaning and schemata32
Text structure and organization41
Density of information42
Text Cohesion43
Bottom-up perspective49
Sentence length50
Syntactic complexity50


Cat in the Rain is a very short story by Ernest Hemingway (an American author, journalist and the 1954 Nobel Prize winner in literature), which was first published in 1925 as a part of the short story collection In Our Time. Hemingway became famous within his own life time (1899–1961), particularly being known for his simple style of writing and careful structuring; thus like most of his novels, his short stories are very easy to read. Cat in the Rain is an apparently simple story about an American couple spending a holiday in Italy, however, as Taylor (1981) puts it, “behind the very realistic surface there is a wealth of symbolism and possible meanings for the readers to supply for themselves” (p. 62). In the pages that follow it will be argued that this simplicity of style generating multiple interpretations in the mind of the reader is what makes Cat in the Rain particularly suitable for the EFL classroom. The thesis focuses attention on the intermediate level of proficiency of English learners; it attempts to defend the view that Cat in the Rain is a text with lexical and structural difficulty that will challenge intermediate students without overwhelming them, and that it is an effective vehicle for the achievement of certain language and content goals at this level of proficiency. In order to support the hypothesis that Cat in the Rain is suitable for an intermediate student of English, the text is discussed from different points of view. The thesis touches upon linguistic, as well as methodological issues, and the overall approach applied is a whole-to-part orientation; it begins with the text as a meaningful whole and then tries to understand the various features that enable the text to function. Chapter One begins by laying out the theoretical background concerning texts and their role in the classroom. Chapter Two deals with the complex issue of authenticity of classroom texts. Chapter Three describes the benefits and challenges of literary tests in ELT. The aim of Chapter Four is to outline some of the processes that take place during reading, as well as the ways of getting meaning from texts. Chapter Five analyses the readability of Cat in the Rain – both from the bottom-up and top-down perspectives – and looks at possible ways of exploiting the text in the intermediate English classroom. Before any discussion can begin, it is necessary to clarify...

References: Anderson, N. J. (1999). Exploring second language reading: Issues and strategies. Boston: Heinle & Heinle.
Azari F., Abdullah, F.-S., & Hoon, T
Ball, P. (2011). How words get the message across. Nature. Retrieved from:
Barnett, M
Betts, E.A. (1957). Foundation of Reading Instruction. New York: American Book.
Brennen, C. F. (2006). Hemingway’s cats. Sarasota, FL: Pineapple Press.
British National Corpus
Broughton, G., Brumfit, C., Flavel, R., Hill, P. & Pincas, A. (1978). Teaching English as a foreign language. London: Routledge & Kegan Paul.
Brown, Douglas H. (2007). Teaching by principles: An interactive approach to language pedagogy. White Plains: Pearson Education.
Carrell, P. L. (1987). Readability in ESL. Reading in a foreign language, 4 (1), 21– 40. Retrieved from
Carver, R
Clarke, D. F. & Nation, I. S. P. (1980). Guessing the meanings of words from context: Strategy and techniques. System, 8, 211–220.
Cobb, T. (2008). The Compleat Lexical Tutor. Retrieved from
Council of Europe (2011)
Davis, J. N. (1989). Facilitating effects of marginal glosses on foreign language reading. The Modern Language Journal, 73 (1), 41–48.
Doff, A. (1991). Teach English: A training course for teachers. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Duff, A. & Maley, A. (1992). Literature. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Favreau, M. & Segalowitz, N. S. (1983). Automatic and controlled processes in the first and second language reading of fluent bilinguals. Memory and Cognition, 11 (1), 56–74.
Feinberg, J. (2009). Wordle. Retrieved from
Francis, W
Halliday, M. A. K. & Hasan, R. (1976). Cohesion in English. London: Longman.
Halliday, M
Harmer, J. (1989). The practice of English language teaching. London: Longman.
Hirsh, D. & Nation, P. (1992). What vocabulary size is needed to read unsimplified texts for pleasure. Reading in a Foreign Language, 8, 689–96. Retrieved from
Hoey, M
Hoey, M. (2005). Lexical priming : A new theory of words and language. New York: Routledge.
Huang, Q. (2009). English reading base on social constructivist approach. Canadian Center of Science and Education, 174–176. Retrieved from
Hunston, S
Hutchinson, T. (1999). New Hotline. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Hutchinson, T. (2000). Project 3. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Krashen, S. (1981). Second language acquisition and second language learning. Oxford: Pergamon Press.
Krashen, S. (1985). The input hypothesis: Issues and implications. London: Longman.
Lakoff, G. & Johnson, M. (1980). Metaphors we live by. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
Laufer, B. (1992). How much lexis is needed for reading comprehension. In Arnaud and Béjoint.
Lawday, C. (1995). Get Set Go 1. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Lazar, G. (2007). Literature and language teaching: A guide for teachers and trainers. Cambridge: Oxford University Press.
Lewis, M. & Hill, J. (1992). Practical techiques for language teaching. Hove: Language Teaching Publications.
Lewis, M. (Ed.). (2000). Teaching collocation – further developments in the lexical approach. Hove: LTP – Language teaching publications.
Lightbown, P. M. & Spada, N. (2006). How languages are learned. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Lomnicka, L. L. (1998). To gloss or not to gloss: An investigation of reading comprehension online. Language Learning & Technology, 1 (2), 41–50. Retrieved from
Lyman-Hager, M
McNamara, D.S., Louwerse, M.M., Cai, Z., & Graesser, A. (2005, January 1). Coh-Metrix version 1.4. Retrieved from http//
Murphy, R
Nation, I. S. P. (1978). Translation and the teaching of meaning: some techniques. ELT Journal, 32, 171–175.
Nation, I. S. P. (1990). Teaching and Learning Vocabulary. New York: Newbury House.
Nation, I. S. P. (2001). Learning vocabulary in another language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Naunton, J
Neslon, M. A. (2011). Using Bloom 's taxonomy for reading comprehension. Retrieved from
Nunan, D
Nuttall, C. (2005). Teaching reading skills in a foreign language. Oxford: Macmillan.
Partington, A. (1998). Patterns and meanings: Using corpora for English language research and teaching. John Benjamins Publishing.
Piantadosi, S. T., Tily, H. & Gibson, E. (2011). Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA doi:10.1073/pnas.1012551108
Plag, I., Braun, M., Lappe, S., & Schramm, M
Pressley, M. (2001). Comprehension instruction: What makes sense now, what might make sense soon. Reading Online, 5 (2). Retrieved from
Readability Formulas
Richards, J. C. (2006). Communicative language teaching today. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Rivers, W. M. (1968). Teaching foreign-language skills. The University of Chicago Press.
Rivers, W
Rivers, W. M. & Temperley, M. S. (1978). A practical guide to the teaching of English as a second or foreign language. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Rothman, J. (2008). Aspect selection in adult L2 Spanish and the competing systems hypothesis. John Benjamins Publishing Company. Retrieved from
Schmidt, R
Simpson, P. & Mayr, A. (2010). Language and power: A resource book for students. London: Routledge.
Sinclair, J.M. (ed.) (1987). Collins Cobuild English Language Dictionary. London: Harper Collins.
Soars, J. & Soars, L. (1986). Headway intermediate. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Stoddard, G. D. (1929). An experiment in verbal learning. Journal of Educational Psychology, 20, 452–457.
Swain, M. (1985). Communicative competence: some roles of comprehensible input and comprehensible output in its development. In Glass and Madden, 235–253.
Swan, M. (2006). Chunks in the classroom: Let’s not go overboard. Michael Swan’s Language and Poetry Website. Retrieved from
Talbot, M
Taylor, P. J. W. (Ed.). (1981). More modern short stories. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Thornbury, S. (2002). How to teach vocabulary. Essex: Longman.
Thornbury, S. (2005). Beyond the sentence. Oxford: Macmillan.
Thornbury, S. (2009–2013). An A-Z of ELT. [Blog comments]. Retrieved from
Thornbury, S
Vygotsky, L. S. (1986). (Original work published 1934). Thought and language (A. Kozulin, Trans.). Cambridge, MA: The MIT Press.
Waring, R. (1997). A comparison of the receptive and productive vocabulary sizes of some second language learners. Immaculata (Notre Dame Seishin University, Okayama), 1, 53–68.
Wible, D. & Tsao, N.-L. (2012, May 16). StringNet 3.0. Retrieved from
Widdowson, H
Widdowson, H. G. (1990). Aspects of language teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Continue Reading

Please join StudyMode to read the full document

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Text Analysis of “The Cat in the Rain” Essay
  • Cat in the Rain Research Paper
  • Essay about “the Cat in the Rain
  • Essay on Cat in the Rain
  • Cat in the rain Essay
  • cats Research Paper
  • The Cat in the Rain Essay

Become a StudyMode Member

Sign Up - It's Free