Fixedness in genre-specific language and intercultural differences
Comparing English and Chinese fire news corpora
This article uses bilingual corpora to explore fixedness in a specific genre of human languages. It compares Chinese and English fire news reports and attempts to find features of fixedness in phraseology and textuality across the two languages from this particular perspective. First, collocations regarding fire incident processing are dealt with in both languages. Then the lexical units larger than collocations are explored, followed by a discussion on textual cohesion created by collocation and variable lexical units. A script model for the Chinese fire news texts is then proposed, to illustrate the concept of “text contour” in certain types of discourse. Finally, the implication of this fixedness and its variability across languages is discussed in terms of the problems it poses for language learners and translators.
Keywords: collocation, extended lexical units, cohesion, script, textual competence
Published online: 14 June 2005
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