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Introducing the Linnaeus University English-German-Swedish corpus (LEGS): rationale, composition and first results
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Languages. (LEGS)ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2315-9324
2018 (English)In: ICAME 39, Corpus Linguistics and Changing Society. Book of abstracts., 2018, p. 201-202Conference paper, Poster (with or without abstract) (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Introducing the Linnaeus University English-German-Swedish corpus (LEGS): rationale, composition and first results

Translation studies have been largely based on fiction texts (Bassnett 2014) and literary analysis. Fiction texts nevertheless contain many author-specific features and are therefore less suitable for many research purposes. Moreover, some translation corpora, such as the Oslo Multi-Lingual Corpus (OMC), largely consist of idiosyncratic and fairly old fiction texts.

In order to address the lack of present-day non-fiction translation corpora, we are in the process of compiling the Linnaeus University English-German-Swedish corpus (LEGS) containing, for instance, biographies and texts about popular science and history. The results of the studies carried out on this corpus will help translators solve actual problems in their work, make language-specific text norms visible, and allow for more research-based translator training.

LEGS consists of recently published (2000s) popular non-fiction texts in English, German and Swedish, and it is balanced for the three languages, every original always being accompanied by two target texts. Each author and translator is represented only once. The corpus currently comprises about 350,000 words in each source language with translations. The aim for the first compilation phase is half a million words.

The main advantage of the corpus is that there are always two translations available for every source-text segment. This makes it possible to compare how the very same instance has been translated into two target languages, allowing identification of language-specific and translation-specific features. Moreover, the corpus provides translations from two source languages into each language.

The current research questions concern German and Swedish correspondences of various English lexico-grammatical structures. One recent study concerns English supplementive ing-clauses in contrast (e.g., Hitler exploded, demanding examples.) (Ström Herold & Levin submitted), and another deals with proper nouns used as modifiers (Ström Herold & Levin in preparation). The findings indicate that German translations of proper noun modifiers produce more compound nouns than Swedish ones, which instead prefer prepositional phrases (e.g., the Norway fiasco > das Norwegen-Fiasko (GE) / fiaskot i Norge (SW)). In contrast, German and Swedish prepositional phrases (Laboratorien in New York (GE) > a New York laboratory) and genitives (FBI:s högkvarter (SW) > FBI headquarters) are very rarely rendered as English proper noun modifiers.

This poster will mainly focus on the progression of the corpus compilation process and the benefits of working with a trilingual translation corpus.

References

Bassnett, Susan. 2014. Translation studies (4th ed). New York: Routledge.

Ström Herold, Jenny & Magnus Levin. In preparation. The Obama presidency, the Macintosh keyboard and the Norway fiasco. English proper noun modifiers in German and Swedish contrast. Paper presented at BICLCE, Vigo, September 2017.

Ström Herold, Jenny & Magnus Levin. Submitted. English supplementive ing-clauses and their German and Swedish translations. Paper presented at ICAME in Prague, Prague, May, 2017.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2018. p. 201-202
National Category
Humanities and the Arts General Language Studies and Linguistics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-74906OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-74906DiVA, id: diva2:1212761
Conference
ICAME 39. Corpus Linguistics and Changing Society. Tampere, 30 maj - 3 juni, 2018
Available from: 2018-06-03 Created: 2018-06-03 Last updated: 2018-06-12

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Citation style
  • apa
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Output format
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