Publication details [#12295]

Espunya, Anna. 2007. Is explicitation in translation cognitively related to linguistic explicitness? A study on interclausal relationships. Belgian Journal of Linguistics 21 : 67–86.
Publication type
Article in jnl/bk
Publication language
Source language
Target language
Journal DOI


The study reported here attempts to establish whether the pragmatic–cognitive principle of informativeness (Atlas and Levinson, 1981; Levinson 1983), which is claimed to influence linguistic explicitness in monolingual discourse production, also plays a role in translational explicitation. The study focuses on the use of connectives in the rendering of complex sentences containing V-ing free adjuncts in translations from English into Catalan. Typically, the relationship between the propositional contents of the free adjunct and the matrix clause is not linguistically specified, but must be inferred. Still, free adjuncts may be augmented. A study on the degree of linguistic explicitness by means of connectives in English (Kortmann 1991) found a correlation between explicitness and informativeness. To test the validity of these findings in translated texts, a corpus of pairs of English ST text fragments containing free adjuncts, and their translations into Catalan, was analysed. Unlike previous approaches, which focus on specific lexical items, this study takes a textual approach by focusing on any connecting words that make interclausal discourse relationships explicit. ST-TT pairs were identified and classified as instances of either explicitation or non-explicitation. The paper discusses both quantitative and qualitative evidence for the scale of informativeness.
Source : Abstract in journal