The hypothesis that "everything we say may be in some degree idiomatic" and that "[...] there are affinities among words that continue to reflect the attachments the words had when we learned them, within larger groups" (Bolinger, 1976:102) provides a powerful argument in favour of the empirical study of collocations, with implications for theoretical, descriptive and applied branches of linguistics. In recent years, notwithstanding the vagueness of the notion and consequent methodological problems in investigating it empirically, the study of collocations has indeed defied difficulties and criticism and sparked renewed interest in a number of areas ranging from computational and corpus linguistics to lexicography, language pedagogy, and crucially for our purposes, translation studies. The hypotheses that "everything we say may be in some degree idiomatic", and that "actual usage plays a very minor role in one’s consciousness of language" (Sinclair 1991:39) raise a number of interesting questions for translation research. Is there any evidence that translators be aware of collocational restrictions in the source and target languages? Do they show sensitivity to phraseological (a)typicality and restrictedness? These are very complex issues, that can hardly be resolved in one fell swoop. For a start, theoretical as well as methodological problems remain as to what collocations are in the first place, and how best they can be retrieved from corpora and compared (see e.g. Krenn 2000a). Secondly, different types of corpora for the study of translation exist, providing different perspectives on the translation process. In this paper, we limit our investigation to monolingual comparable corpora (MCC) and present a number of attempts at selecting and comparing collocations across original and translated texts. This study is novel in at least two ways: to the best of our knowledge, no previous investigation of the behaviour of translators through MCC has focused on collocational restrictions, and no study of collocational restrictions in translated texts has attempted to select candidate bigrams automatically.

A preliminary analysis of collocational differences in monolingual comparable corpora

BARONI, MARCO;BERNARDINI, SILVIA
2007

Abstract

The hypothesis that "everything we say may be in some degree idiomatic" and that "[...] there are affinities among words that continue to reflect the attachments the words had when we learned them, within larger groups" (Bolinger, 1976:102) provides a powerful argument in favour of the empirical study of collocations, with implications for theoretical, descriptive and applied branches of linguistics. In recent years, notwithstanding the vagueness of the notion and consequent methodological problems in investigating it empirically, the study of collocations has indeed defied difficulties and criticism and sparked renewed interest in a number of areas ranging from computational and corpus linguistics to lexicography, language pedagogy, and crucially for our purposes, translation studies. The hypotheses that "everything we say may be in some degree idiomatic", and that "actual usage plays a very minor role in one’s consciousness of language" (Sinclair 1991:39) raise a number of interesting questions for translation research. Is there any evidence that translators be aware of collocational restrictions in the source and target languages? Do they show sensitivity to phraseological (a)typicality and restrictedness? These are very complex issues, that can hardly be resolved in one fell swoop. For a start, theoretical as well as methodological problems remain as to what collocations are in the first place, and how best they can be retrieved from corpora and compared (see e.g. Krenn 2000a). Secondly, different types of corpora for the study of translation exist, providing different perspectives on the translation process. In this paper, we limit our investigation to monolingual comparable corpora (MCC) and present a number of attempts at selecting and comparing collocations across original and translated texts. This study is novel in at least two ways: to the best of our knowledge, no previous investigation of the behaviour of translators through MCC has focused on collocational restrictions, and no study of collocational restrictions in translated texts has attempted to select candidate bigrams automatically.
Critical concepts in corpus linguistics
366
383
M. Baroni; S. Bernardini
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/57941
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