Scientific registers in contact
An exploration of the lexico-grammatical properties of interdisciplinary discourses
We report on a project investigating the lexico-grammatical properties of English scientific texts. The goal of this project is to gain insight into the linguistic effects of two scientific disciplines coming into contact with one another (e.g. computer science and linguistics) and possibly forming a merged, new discipline (i.e. computational linguistics). The crucial question to be addressed is how such merged disciplines construe their own, distinctive identity and which kinds of linguistic means they employ to this end. To approach this question, we apply the notion of register, i.e. functional variation or variation according to context of use. On the basis of a corpus of scientific research articles from nine scientific domains, we explore selected lexico-grammatical patterns and assess their contribution to register formation.
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