Publication details [#7893]

Khalil, Esam. 2001. Grounding and the reconstruction of meaning: a text linguistics perspective on translation. In Lewandowska-Tomaszczyk, Barbara and Marcel Thelen, eds. Translation and meaning 5. Maastricht: Universitaire Pers. pp. 73–83.
Publication type
Article in jnl/bk
Publication language
Source language
Target language


This paper looks at certain features of language in use as exemplified by translation, in terms of the text semantic property of grounding, or the foreground-background structure. It explains that structure and compares it in original and translated texts. The paper shows that although the target language text usually follows the foreground-background structure of the source language text, it may nevertheless reconstruct propositional meaning and express it differently. Focusing on entities that appear in sentence-initial position, the paper explains the significance of these entities and their potential for signalling the foreground-background structure. Sentence-initial entities are a potential source of discrepancy between source and target language texts. Textual issues involved in the process of translation are illustrates with examples from English and Arabic short news texts. The paper demonstrates that text-level grounding features need to be taken into consideration in performing various types of translation activities.
Source : Abstract in book