• The authors:
    Elena S. Orlova
  • Issue: July 24-26th, 2019
  • Pages: 563-569
  • URL:
  • DOI:

Abstract. Second language acquisition (SLA) is referred to a wide-ranging
field of knowledge concerned with learning and teaching an additional (nonprimary) language alongside the disciplinary inquiry and research of the
objects involved in the domain. Distinguished by an ample extent from
boundary to boundary, the realm of SLA is not marked off by any
circumambient lines revealing the construction of the field. In the absence
of the overall underlying frames established and unanimously
acknowledged by the associated community, the current state of the arts in
SLA theorizing is characterized by multiple conceptions, methodologies and
approaches. The significance of the very term theory is by no means
straightforward as the word encompasses quite a few dissimilar notions like
contemplationvs. comprehension or hypothesizingvs. action, hypothesizing
vs.comprehension, a set of ideal principlesvs. a set of principles of action,
ideal beliefs vs. basis of action, a field of intellectual inquiry vs. an
intellectual discipline, abstract knowledge vs. plan of action, etc. The
concept theory seems to cover so much that its very usage now appears
inconceivable without the term being specified first. Nevertheless, these
opposed meanings are not bound to be treated in isolation or, taken
separately, to be considered as an underlying research foundation. With
regard to the current study the discreteness of the subject investigated is
initially contrary to the ultimate aim of establishing the integrity of both
theory concept and construct. Any deviation to a particular part of the
meaningful array would inevitably lead to the onesidedness of the main
subject’s investigation. Put it another way, the multimodality of the concept
theory should not prevent researchers from investigating the distinct types
of its understanding in holistic terms thus making the idea of theory
consistent and harmonious. Despite the noticeable multiplicity and
variability of the conceptual meanings the idea of theory could be
represented by constant units emphasizing its wholeness. The concept of
theory might be interpreted and structured in the mode of correlative
equivalence binary oppositions generate, i.e. in the form of a set of binary
constituencies. An essential presupposition is advanced with the claim that
the notion of binary opposition be capable of making a case for the
substantiation of the idea of a universal structural element the common
DOI: 10.22363/09669-2019-563-569
theoretical framework is composed of. The justification of the theoretical
model of the current research relies on the following premises.
(1) Binary opposition methodology allows the language, communication
and individual universe to be integrated as an organized whole.
(2) It is a binary unit that reflects a common characteristic functioning at all
levels of a system. A binary representation mode is an adjustable tool that
gives the whole system the means of focusing on all aspects, from the most
abstract to the most concrete.
(3) Each phenomenon is to be considered as part of the whole equally
important to the entire system; it is irrelevant for any element to be treated
(4) The entire domain of language acquisition can be described by a series
of dichotomies, with the opposites not necessarily belonging to the
extremities of each binary unit. It is midway between opposed extremities
that makes it possible to pass from one to the other or from one binary pair
to another.
Language learning theory is certain to have numerous properties other than
just binarity, and its constructive principles make reference to more than just
a few principal oppositions. Nevertheless, disregarding certain particulars,
binary opposition outlines a good prospect for an explanatory general theory
of language learning. Binary opposition might function as the central axial
interior part of a theory structure.
Keywords:SLA, theory, binary opposition, theoretical framework

Elena S. Orlova
N.I. Lobachevsky Nizhny Novgorod State University,
Nizhny Novgorod, Russia, e-mail:

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