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Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies
Interconnected: The Corpus-based Approach
Noelia Ramn Garca
n Garc
CLas we knew it before the expansion of language corpora. Another in-
Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies Interconnected
James 1980; Ivir 1981). This fact is of great significance in study-
guage teacher could have foreseen on the basis of his daily practice. The
interest in CLdeclined greatly and was only rekindled in the 1990s when
boost to the discipline. The availability of huge amounts of machine-read-
able texts led to a shift in the focus of CLfrom linguistic systems in a more
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angewandter, synchronisch-vergleichender Sprachwissenschaft unter ono-
Great efforts were made to free the study of translation from the bonds
of other language-related disciplines. The complexity of the translation
process began tobe recognised and it was no longer relegated to subparts
Translation began to be regarded as a communicative event equal to any
The features that make translations different from original texts were the
ones that had to be explored by translation scholars. Therefore, it soon
dealing with translation as its main object of study. This is what came to be
Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies Interconnected
n Garc
Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies Interconnected
great help in this task. Acorpus provides a wide range of real examples of
one and the same linguistic form or structure. Consequently, the contrastive
linguist will have a sufficient number of relevant cases coming from dif-
ferent sources and in different contexts to explain the use of the forms in
(cf. 2.1.), CLlost much of its interest for scholars in the following years, but
data; indeed they have been the principal reason for the revival of contrastivelinguistics that has taken place in the 1990s. (Salkie 2002).I have argued in this paper that it is not only corpora that have brought
decisive changes into CL. The shift of the main interest for applying the
results of CLfrom foreign language teaching to translation is another feature
of the thorough reorganisation that has taken place in the discipline.
Different types of corpora may be used for contrastive studies with different
1.The descriptions of the specific linguistic forms have to be done
We agree with Lauridsen (1996) in considering that the use of two
cases. This type of corpus-based contrastive analysis is being car-
cialised languages (Lpez Arroyo 2000). In this case, the studies
way how two languages work in one specific area. The use of cor-
pora for this type of CLresembles the use of corpora in descriptive
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data for explaining the phenomenon of translation.The focus is on languages
nicative purpose. When we consider CLfrom this perspective, it becomes
obvious that CLis regarded as a tool for TS. It may be argued that one of
study, but we cannot ignore the fact that both types exist and may produce
Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies Interconnected
5. Electronic corpora in TS
Electronic corpora have been used extensively in TS since the beginning of
in the discipline. According to Laviosa, the corpus-based approach is evol-
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Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies Interconnected
Another aspect that should be highlighted is the fact that TS draws on
many different linguistic subdivisions (sociolinguistics, text linguistics,
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turned to face each other directly and are more interrelated than ever, com-
plementing each other constantly.
In this giving and taking of mutual help it may seem that TS is the part
that benefits in a more direct way. One could even say that TS makes use of
CLas a mere tool that serves its purposes: it feeds in information, has it
processed, and then recovers the results for its own use. CLis limited to
opinion TS represents a more active role in the research process, while CL
CLaims at acquiring knowledge about two languages on a descriptive basis
and TS aims at acquiring knowledge about the actual translation process
help for different areas within TS. On the other hand, corpus-based TS draws
Contrastive Linguistics and Translation Studies Interconnected
Applications. Francis Baker & Elena Tognini-Bonelli (1993), 233-250.
Baker, Mona (1995). Corpora in Translation Studies: An Overview and Some
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. Ann Arbor: The University of Michigan Press.
Lauridsen, Karen M. (1996). Text Corpora and Contrastive Studies: Which Type of
Corpus for Which Type of Analysis. Aijmer, Altenberg & Johansson (1996),
The English Comparable Corpus (ECC): AResource and a

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