Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume 13. Number1.  March 2022                                    Pp. 211-239

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Educators’ Attitudes toward Teaching Western Literature to Saudi University Students 

Huda B. Al-Matrafi
Department of Foreign Languages, College of Arts,
Taif University, Taif, Saudi Arabia


Received: 11/18/2021                         Accepted: 2/16/2022                       Published: 3/24/2022


Numerous studies have investigated the issue of teaching in EFL classrooms and the relationship between educators and students; some focus on the pedagogy used to teach English, while others center on students’ attitudes. This study fills an existing gap in the literature on educators’ attitudes toward teaching Western literature in non-Western settings. It surveys educators’ backgrounds and perspectives toward teaching Western cultural, social, and religious issues in Saudi Arabia and identifies which variables influence their attitudes toward teaching Western literature. It examines educators’ goals in teaching Western literature within the Saudi context, in line with the progressive Vision 2030 and the ongoing process of globalization. It investigates the present state of teaching Western literature in the English departments of eight Saudi universities through a mixed-methods approach, analyzing data from a questionnaire completed by 99 educators. This study highlights the significance of teaching Western literary texts in Saudi bachelor (BA) teaching programs. The results yield some valuable pedagogical implications on what Western literature can offer English-as-a-foreign-language (EFL) students in Saudi universities. They demonstrate the educators’ positive attitudes toward teaching Western literature in EFL classrooms, believing that it can achieve objectives that transcend the boundaries of language and text. These findings are rewarding in a broader sense and particularly so in this globalized era. Accordingly, this study recommends the teaching of Western literature as a means of bridging the East/West divide, a matter of increasing significance in the current era.
Keywords: EFL classrooms, Saudi Arabia, educators’ attitudes, Western literature 

Cite as:   Al-Matrafi, H. B. (2022). Educators’ Attitudes toward Teaching Western Literature to Saudi University Students
Arab World English Journal, 13 (1) 211-239.


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Received: 11/18/2021     
Accepted: 2/16/2022 
Published: 3/24/2022

Huda B. Al-Matrafi is an associate professor of literature in the Department of Foreign Languages at Taif University in Saudi Arabia. She holds a PHD in Literature from Essex University, UK. She is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK, since August 2018. Dr Al-Matrafi has several international publications. Her research interests include Arab-American literature.