Editors and Translators Meeting 2007 – METM 07
Real Jardín Botánico/CSIC, Plaza de Murillo 2, 28014 Madrid, Spain
Poster: Discipline- and Genre-Specific Language Corpus Analysis - A Handy Tool for Clarifying Language Usage
Formal knowledge of language, personal experience with field-specific varieties, and familiarity with style guidelines are sometimes insufficient for resolving doubts about specialist English word usage. Busy editors and translators - whether or not they are first-language users of English or field specialists - can extend their range of knowledge by creating a "target language corpus" of texts to emulate. A simple corpus analysis tool called a "concordancer" can mine the corpus for reliable answers to questions about how words can be handled in keeping with the expectations of experienced readers of those text types. This approach, which helps translators and manuscript editors to work more confidently, is especially useful for teams whose usage must converge to reflect a similar pattern.
Mary Ellen Kerans is a freelance translator and editor in Barcelona Spain. She began using corpora as an instructor of English for specific purposes and she now uses this tool in team translation in medical specialties. Ailish Maher is a freelance translator in Berga, Spain. Ailish, Mary Ellen and Stephen Waller are developing MET's workshop on Corpus-guided editing and translation of specialist texts.