Professor John Klapper BA, MLitt, PGCE, PhD, NTF, FHEA

Department of Modern Languages

Contact details

Address
Ashley Building
University of Birmingham
Edgbaston
Birmingham
B15 2TT
UK

Qualifications

  • BA Combined German & Russian (First Class Honours) (Birmingham)
  • M Litt (Oxon)
  • PGCE (Oxon)
  • PhD (Birmingham)

Biography

John Klapper took a degree in German and Russian at the University of Birmingham. After three years’ postgraduate work at St John’s College, Oxford, he took a PGCE to qualify as a teacher of modern languages and taught in a secondary school for three years. Following a further three years as Lecturer in Russian and German at Wolverhampton Polytechnic, he returned to Birmingham in 1990 as a Lecturer in German and helped to set up and subsequently became Director of the Centre for Modern Languages (formerly the Modern Languages Unit). In 2000 he was made a HEFCE National Teaching Fellow. He was briefly Co-Director of the newly established Centre for European Languages and Cultures, from 2006–08 served as Deputy Head of the School of Humanities, and from 2009-2012 was Head of the School of Languages, Cultures, Art History and Music.

Teaching

John has experience of teaching a wide range of language and translation courses in both German and Russian, modules on Soviet society, on the history, politics and economy of post-war Germany, on post-war German literature, oppositional writing in Nazi Germany and language teacher training.

Postgraduate supervision

  • German inner emigrant writers
  • Literature under National Socialism
  • Language pedagogy
  • Instructed second language acquisition

Research

John has research interests in twentieth-century German literature, in particular: the literary ‘inner emigration’ and the work of non-conformist writers in Nazi Germany (Andres, Wiechert, Bergengruen, le Fort, Reck-Malleczewen, Schneider, Jünger); the relationship between writers in inner and territorial exile; and post-war literature of the Adenauer era. He has further interests across the field of foreign language learning and teaching, including the development of foreign language proficiency, content-based language learning, pedagogical grammar, and language teacher development.

Other activities

From 2001–2003, as part of his National Teaching Fellowship, John designed and co-ordinated the DELPHI project, a national collaborative online training materials initiative.  He has held over 25 external examinerships, has been a reviewer for senior academic posts at numerous institutions and has conducted several reviews or audits for other universities. He has also been a critical reader for various academic publishers, including OUP, Stanley Thorne, Collets, Hodder & Stoughton, Routledge, Palgrave Macmillan.

Publications

Monographs

  • 2015: Non-conformist Writing in Nazi Germany: The Literature of Inner Emigration (New York: Camden House). 453 pp.
  • 2006: Understanding and Developing Good Practice: Teaching Languages in Higher Education (London: CILT). 490 pp.
  • 1998: Stefan Andres. Der christliche Humanist als Kritiker seiner Zeit. (Frankfurt a. M.: Peter Lang). 216 pp.
  • 1996: Foreign-Language Learning Through Immersion: Germany’s Bilingual-Wing Schools (Lampeter: Edwin Mellen Press). 266 pp.
  • 1995: Stefan Andres. The Christian Humanist as a Critic of his Times (Bern / Berlin / Frankfurt a. M.: Peter Lang). 188 pp.

Other authored books

  • 2011: Modern German Grammar: A Practical Guide. Third revised edition (London: Routledge) with R. Whittle and K. Glöckel. 475 pp.
  • 2011: Modern German Grammar Workbook. Third revised edition (London: Routledge) with H. Zojer and R. Whittle. 172 pp.
  • 2008: Die moderne deutsche Grammatik. Chinese language version of Modern German Grammar. (Routledge/Dalian University of Technology Press) with B. Dodd, C. Eckhard-Black and R. Whittle. 453 pp.
  • 2008: Edexcel German Grammar for A Level (London: Hodder Educational) with T. McMahon. 334 pp.2006: Aktion Grammatik! A new German grammar. Third revised edition (London: Hodder & Stoughton) with T. McMahon. 334 pp.
  • 2006: Aktion Grammatik! A new German grammar. Third revised edition (London: Hodder & Stoughton) with T. McMahon. 334 pp.
  • 2003: Modern German Grammar: A Practical Guide. Second revised edition (London: Routledge) with B. Dodd, C. Eckhard-Black and R. Whittle. 454 pp.
  • 2003: Modern German Grammar Workbook. Second revised edition (London: Routledge) with H. Zojer, W.J. Dodd, C. Eckhard-Black and R. Whittle. 144 pp.
  • 2000: Aktion Grammatik! A new German grammar. Second revised edition (London: Hodder & Stoughton) with T. McMahon. 367 pp.
  • 1998: Neue kommunikative Grammatik. A Communicative Grammar Worktext with Written and Oral Practice (Lincolnwood, Illinois: National Textbook Company) with T. McMahon. 354 pp.
  • 1996: Aktion Grammatik! A new German grammar. (London: Hodder & Stoughton) with T. McMahon. 360 pp.
  • 1996: Modern German Grammar: A Practical Guide. (London: Routledge) with B. Dodd, C. Eckhard-Black and R. Whittle. 492 pp.
  • 1996: Modern German Grammar Workbook (London: Routledge) with W.J. Dodd, C. Eckhard-Black and R. Whittle. 105 pp.
  • 1990: Russian for Everyone. CALL materials for ab-initio and intermediate learners of Russian (Wolverhampton Polytechnic/Collets), with M-P. Detraz, N. Malcolm, P. Rooney. 8 disks.
  • 1988: Russian in Dialogues and Interviews. A video course for GCSE Russian (Wolverhampton Polytechnic/Collets). Video cassette (70 mins.), audio cassette (55 mins.), pupils’ book (110 pp.), teacher’s book (50 pp.)

Edited books/collections

  • 2011:  Stefan Andres-Bibliographie, available at: http://stefan-andres-gesellschaft.de/?page_id=25  (52 pp.)
  • 2007: Stefan Andres. Die Sintflut. Neue Ausgabe. (Göttingen: Wallstein). 950 pp.
  • 2005: Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge) with J. Coleman. 236 pp.
  • 2003: DELPHI Language Training Materials, HEFCE National Teaching Fellowship, 15 peer-reviewed modules (c. 300,000 words)
  • 2001: Teaching  Languages in Higher Education. Issues in Training and Continuing Professional Development (London: CILT). 221 pp.
  • 2000: DOPLA Teacher Training Materials (University of Birmingham) with P. Gravestock, C. Gray, R. McCulloch. 356 pp. With accompanying video and audio tapes.
  • 1992: Heinrich Böll’s Best Stories (London: Bristol Classical Press). 95 pp.
  • 1992: Temy. Olympus Satellite Russian Programme II (Language Teaching Centre, University of Oxford; broadcast on Olympus satellite), with T. Stableford. Video cassette (1 hour), booklet (32 pp.)
  • 1990: Temy. Olympus Satellite Russian Programme I (Language Teaching Centre, University of Oxford; broadcast on Olympus satellite), with P. Corness, C. Marsh, D. Martin, T. Stableford. Video cassette (1 hour), booklet (50 pp.)
  • 1989: Glasnost’: Word and Picture. An Intermediate Russian Reader (Wolverhampton Polytechnic/Collets). 239 pp.

Articles

  • 2014: ‘Categories of the Non-Conformist: The Historical Fiction of Inner Emigration’, German Life and Letters 67 (2014), 2, 158-81. 
  • 2012: ‘University residence abraod for foreign language students: analysing the linguistic benefits’,  Language Learning Journal 40 (2012), 3, 335-58 (with J. Rees).
  • 2010: ‘Rediscovering the “other Germany”: A new edition of the works of Stefan Andres’, Review article, Seminar 47 (2011), 3, 379-388. Also online at: http://stefan-andres-gesellschaft.de/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/Seminar-review-article.pdf
  • 2010: ‘Ante- and post-diluvian reflections of an “inner emigrant”: Stefan Andres’ trilogy Die Sintflut (1949­­­–1959/2007)’, Seminar 46, 1, 26-49
  • 2010:  ‘Disputed non-conformist and ‘Zwischenreichautor’: A re-assessment of Ernst Wiechert’s life and work in Nazi Germany’, Oxford German Studies 39, 3, 250–70.
  • 2009: ‘Cultural ‘Diskontinuität’ and thematic continuity: Ernst Wiechert after 1945’, German Life and Letters 62, 4, 430–47.
  • 2009: „Rückgratstärkung“ für das „andere Deutschland“? Stefan Andres’ Veröffentlichungen in der Krakauer Zeitung 1940–1943’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 30, 29–37.
  • 2008: ‘Schriftstellerische Selbstkritik und erneute Auseinandersetzung mit der Zeit: Zu den Kürzungen in der gestrichenen Fassung der Sintflut-Trilogie’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 29, 52–66.
  • 2007: ‘Analysing and evaluating the linguistic benefit of residence abroad for foreign language students’, Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education 32, 3, 331–353 (with J. Rees). 
  • 2004: ‘Marks, get set, go: an evaluation of entry levels and progress rates on a university foreign language programme’, Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education 29, 1, 21–39 (with J. Rees).
  • 2003: ‘Reviewing the case for explicit grammar instruction in the university foreign language learning context’, Language Teaching Research 7, 3, 285–314 (with J. Rees).
  • 2003: ‘Taking communication to task? A critical review of recent trends in language teaching’, Language Learning Journal 27, 33–42.
  • 2002: ‘Training the trainer: language teaching assistants, Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies Good Practice Guide
  • 2002: ‘Training the trainer: staff development for language teaching, Languages, Linguistics and Area Studies Good Practice Guide
  • 1998: ‘Language learning at school and university: the great grammar debate continues (II)’, Language Learning Journal 18, 22–8.
  • 1997: ‘Language learning at school and university: the great grammar debate continues (I)’, Language Learning Journal 16, 22–7.
  • 1997: ‘Stefan Andres’ mythisch-religiöse Auseinandersetzung mit seiner Zeit: Die Sintflut-Trilogie im Spiegel des Gesamtwerks’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 17, 45–63.
  • 1995: ‘German spelling and punctuation: The proposed reforms’, German Teaching 12, 61–3.
  • 1994: ‘Germany’s Bilinguale Züge’, German Teaching 10, 31–5.
  • 1994: ‘Zur Arbeit mit Videoaufzeichnungen von Lernerleistungen im Fremdsprachen-unterricht’, Fremdsprachenunterricht (FRG) 38, 2, 88–92.
  • 1993: ‘Fleeting prepositional ‘o’ in the contemporary Russian language’, Russian Language Journal (USA) 48, 17–33.
  • 1993: ‘More new place names in the former Soviet Union’, Rusistika 7, 45–9.
  • 1993: ‘New approaches to foreign-language teaching in Europe: the dual-language secondary school’, Compare 23, 3, 247–62.
  • 1993: ‘Practicable skills and practical constraints in FL reading’, Language Learning Journal 7, 50–4.
  • 1992: ‘German unification and the teaching of modern languages: the methodological legacy of the GDR’, Comparative Education 28, 3, 235–47.
  • 1992: ‘Heinrich Böll: Doktor Murkes gesammeltes Schweigen’, German Teaching 5, 30–5.
  • 1992: ‘Phoneme–grapheme confusion in basic (and not so basic) Russian writing’, Rusistika 5, 2–6.
  • 1992: ‘Preliminary considerations for the teaching of FL reading’, Language Learning Journal 6, 53–6.
  • 1992: ‘Reading in a foreign language: theoretical issues’, Language Learning Journal 5, 27–30.
  • 1992: ‘Theoretical models of foreign language teaching in Germany’, German Teaching 6, 20–4.
  • 1992: ‘The search for synthesis: religion and myth in the work of Stefan Andres’, German Life and Letters 45, 2, 149–57.
  • 1991: ‘Existence, authenticity and the limit situation: existentialist influences in the work of Stefan Andres’, New German Studies 16, 3, 143–58.
  • 1991: ‘The role of the video camera in communicative language teaching and evaluation’, Language Learning Journal 4, 12–15. 
  • 1991: ‘Video in the classroom: a progress report’, Rusistika 4, 30–4.
  • 1990: ‘Stefan Andres: a reassessment’, German Life and Letters 43, 3, 234–45.
  • 1989: ‘Die Krise der Menschwerdung: Christliche Existenzphilosophie bei Stefan Andres’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 10, 14–21.
  • 1989: ‘Teaching Russian from the sky’, Britain–USSR. Bulletin of the Great Britain–USSR Association 84, 4, 6–7.
  • 1988: ‘“Der Mörderbock” — ein literarisches Kunstwerk als Indiz für die Desillusionierung eines Schriftstellers’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 9, 33–43.
  • 1986: ‘Der Mensch, Christus und Dionysos. Einige Gedanken zu Stefan Andres’ christlichem Humanismus’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 7, 23–31.
  • 1985: ‘“Die Reise nach Portiuncula” und die Schuld–Sühne-Problematik im Erzählwerk von Stefan Andres’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 6, 41–8.
  • 1983: ‘Die Kunst des Heterodoxen: Aspekte des theologischen Denkens Stefan Andres’’, Mitteilungen der Stefan-Andres-Gesellschaft 4, 61–72.

Chapters in books/collections

  • 2013:  ‘ „[...] um aus dem Vergangenen Gesetz und Maß des Gegenwärtigen herüberholen“: Zur Einordnung von Stefan Andres’ geschichtlicher Prosa im Dritten Reich’, in: Hanns-Werner Heister and Bernhard Spies (eds), Mimesis, Mimikry, Simulatio. Tarnung und Aufdeckung in den Künsten vom 16. bis zum 21. Jahrhundert. Festschrift für Erwin Rotermund zum 80. (Berlin: Weidler Buchverlag, 2013), pp. 61–73.
  • 2009: ‘Antikes Gedankengut, gelebter Glaube und Institution Kirche: Zur geistigen und literarischen Welt von Stefan Andres’, in: Hans-Rüdiger Schwab (ed.), Katholische Intellektuelle des 20. Jahrhunderts (Kevelaer: Butzon & Bercker), pp. 393–410 + 769–72.
  • 2008: ‘Encouragement for the ‘Other Germany’? Stefan Andres’s publications in the Krakauer Zeitung 1940–1943’, in: N. Harris and J. Sayner (eds), The Text and its Context. (Bern: Peter Lang), pp. 121–32.
  • 2008: ‘Deliberate and incidental: vocabulary learning strategies in independent second language learning’ in: S. Hurd and T. Lewis, (eds), Language Learning Strategies in Independent Settings (Clevedon: Multilingual Matters), pp. 159–78.
  • 2008: ‘Issues in the quantitative longitudinal measurement of second language progress in the study abroad context’ in: L. Ortega and H. Byrnes (eds), The Longitudinal Study of Advanced L2 Capacities (New York/London: Routledge), (with J. Rees), pp. 89–105.
  • 2008: ‘Key aspects of teaching and learning in languages’, revised chapter in: H. Fry, S. Ketteridge and S. Marshall (eds), A Handbook for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. Enhancing Academic Practice. Third revised edition (London: Routledge/Kogan Page) (with C. Gray), pp. 323–44.
  • 2007: ‘„Es ist schwer, aus einem Ende zu stammen, und doch Anfang zu sein.“ Stefan Andres: ,innere Emigration‘ und Nachkriegszeit.’ In: M. Braun and G. Guntermann (eds), „Gerettet und zugleich von Scham verschlungen“. Neue Annäherungen an die Literatur der ‚Inneren Emigration’  (Frankfurt/M.: Peter Lang), pp. 134–149.
  • 2005: ‘Assessing language skills’ in: J. Coleman and J. Klapper (eds), Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge), pp. 90–101.
  • 2005: ‘Assessment in modern languages’ in: J. Coleman and J. Klapper (eds), Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge), pp. 80–89.
  • 2005: ‘Introduction’ in: J. Coleman and J. Klapper (eds), Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge), pp. xii–xiv (with J. Coleman).
  • 2005: ‘Researching the benefits of residence abroad for students of modern foreign languages’ in: M. Tight (ed.), International Relations. International Perspectives on Higher Education Research, Volume 3 (New York/London: Elsevier), pp. 67–97 (with J. Rees).
  • 2005: ‘Research into language learning’ in: J. Coleman and J. Klapper (eds), Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge), pp. 31–43 (with J. Coleman).
  • 2005: ‘Teaching grammar’ in: J. Coleman and J. Klapper (eds), Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge), pp. 67–74.
  • 2005: Who teaches them? Professional development in modern languages’ in: J. Coleman and J. Klapper (eds), Effective Learning and Teaching in Modern Languages (London: Routledge), pp. 23–28.
  • 2003: ‘Approaches to assessment’, training module in National Teaching Fellowship DELPHI programme, (25,000 words)
  • 2003: ‘Key aspects of teaching and learning in languages’, revised chapter in: H. Fry, S. Ketteridge and S. Marshall (eds), A Handbook for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. Enhancing Academic Practice. Second revised edition (London: Kogan Page), pp 344–65 (with C. Gray)
  • 2003: ‘Varieties of language testing’, training module in National Teaching Fellowship DELPHI programme,(28,000 words)
  • 2002: ‘Understanding and developing reading in a foreign language’, training module in National Teaching Fellowship DELPHI programme,(17,000 words)
  • 2002: ‘Working with written texts in the foreign language classroom’, training module in National Teaching Fellowship DELPHI programme, (18,000 words)
  • 2001: ‘Introduction: Professional development in modern languages’, in: J. Klapper (ed.), Teaching  Languages in Higher Education. Issues in Training and Continuing Professional Development (London: CILT), pp. 1-15. 
  • 2001: ‘Shifting perspectives on language teacher education’, in: J. Klapper (ed.), Teaching  Languages in Higher Education. Issues in Training and Continuing Professional Development (London: CILT), pp. 15-34.
  • 2001: ‘Understanding language learning and second language acquisition’, in: L. Arthur & S. Hurd (eds), Lifelong Language Learning. Aspects of Theory and Practice (London: CILT), pp. 26–35.
  • 2000: ‘Issues and challenges in the teaching of modern languages’, in: C. Rust (ed.),  Improving Student Learning through the Disciplines (Oxford: Oxford Centre for Educational Development) with L. Arthur, pp. 96-105.
  • 2000: ‘The paradox of simultaneity: Vergangenheitsbewältigung in Paul Schallück’s Engelbert Reineke’, in: Michael Butler & Robert Evans (eds),  The Challenge of German Culture. Essays Presented to Wilfried van der Will (London: Macmillan), pp. 112-23.
  • 2000: ‘Training graduate teachers and foreign language assistants in UK universities: a reflective approach’, in: B. Rifkin (ed.), Selection, Mentoring and Training of Foreign Language Teachers (Madison: Heinle and Heinle), pp. 148-77.
  • 1999: ‘Key aspects of teaching and learning in languages’, in: H. Fry, S. Ketteridge and S. Marshall (eds), A Handbook for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (London: Kogan Page) with C. Gray, pp. 329-49.
  • 1999: ‘Das Samenkorn und das Kreuz. Christlicher Humanismus in der Sintflut-Trilogie’, in: Michael Braun, Georg Guntermann and Birgit Lermen (eds): Stefan Andres, Zeitzeuge des 20. Jahrhunderts. (Frankfurt a. M. u.a.: Peter Lang), pp. 253–68.
  • 1998: ‘Developing key skills and language use in foreign language learning’, in: R. McCulloch and A. Morton (eds), Good Practice in Teaching. A Collection of Case Studies. Vol. 2. (Birmingham: University of Birmingham), pp. 9-12.
  • 1994: ‘The art of aggression and its limitations: the early satires’, in: Michael Butler (ed.), The Narrative Fiction of Heinrich Böll. Social Conscience and Literary Achievement (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press), pp. 70–88.
  • 1990: ‘“Der Mörderbock” — ein literarisches Kunstwerk als Indiz für die Desillusionierung eines Schriftstellers’, in: Mein Thema ist der Mensch. Texte von und über Stefan Andres (Munich: Piper), pp. 283–301.
  • 1990: ‘Die Kunst des Heterodoxen: Aspekte des theologischen Denkens Stefan Andres’’, in: Mein Thema ist der Mensch. Texte von und über Stefan Andres (Munich: Piper), pp. 104–25.

Book reviews

Numerous reviews in:

  • Journal of European Studies
  • German Teaching
  • Seminar
  • Deutsch: Lehren und Lernen
  • Language Learning Journal
  • Studies in Contemporary Jewry
  • Archiv für das Studium der neueren Sprachen und Literaturen