The intercultural component in Business English textbooks
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DepartmentFilología Francesa e Inglesa
SourceIbérica 26 (2013) : 171- 194
The relationship between culture and business is crucial; therefore, in an international business context Intercultural Communicative Competence (ICC) is essential for effectively dealing with other cultures. The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages highlights the relevance of intercultural language education in developing effective communication across linguistic and cultural boundaries (Council of Europe, 2001). Thus, in recent years, whereas there has been an increasing interest in Intercultural Business Communication (IBC), relatively little attention has been paid to the study of the intercultural component in texts used for the teaching of English for Business, despite the fact that textbooks are a key resource for language instructors. This paper aims to examine the role that the intercultural component has played in Business English textbooks since the 1960s. It explores whether and to what extent those textbooks have promoted the acquisition of ICC, at the same time it reviews the development of ICC as a concept and the ways in which it has been taught over the years. A selection of 67 general Business English textbooks published between 1963 and 2009 are analysed.