Abstract: Over the last decades, the Common European Framework for Languages: Learning, Teaching, Assessment influenced national curricula and expectations concerning language proficiency based on real-life experience. The paper discusses the impact of reading contemporary literary prose, focusing on cultural aspects that are not likely to be found in the course book, but only in materials related to real-life situations. The study referring to the efficiency of acquiring cultural information has revealed that being naturally exposed to target culture is more attractive for ELT learners and help them develop cultural awareness significantly. The factor that seems to influence the approach of learners to cultural awareness is a context-based naturalness of presenting different aspects that are linked to real life. Being engaged in the plot, the learners can recognise specific features concerning target culture that enable them to better understand a written text and interact with the writer.
Keywords: cultural awareness, contemporary literary texts, naturalness, context, real-life experience and situations