This article examines whether there are differences in the frequency of discourse markers (DMs) between Native English (NE) and Non-native English (NNE) corpora of political media discourse. Based on the grammatical-pragmatic perspective of discourse markers (Fraser, 2004), the discourse markers identified in the corpora were divided into four semantic categories: contrastive discourse markers (CDM), elaborative discourse markers (EDM), implicative discourse markers (IDM) and temporal discourse markers (TDM). The results revealed that: (i) in both corpora, implicative discourse markers (IDMs) and elaborative discourse markers (EDMs) have the lowest and highest frequency counts respectively, (ii) there are significant differences across the four types of discourse markers in both corpora, (iii) there is no significant difference in the aggregated frequency of discourse markers across NE and NNE political news discourse, and (iv) there are no relative NE/NNE frequency differences within each category of discourse markers. The findings point to the need for revisiting Kaplan's contrastive rhetoric, and provide evidence for the plausibility of a “ universal discourse competence” in advanced NNE written discourse.
Today the focus of translation scholars has shifted from stable aspects of texts to dynamic aspects. Such a focus requires close attention to the semiotic level of the text in translation which in turn leads to considering semiotic as well as textual aspects of a text in translation quality assessment (TQA). The present study was an attempt to apply semiotics to a model of translation assessment proposed by Vahid et al. (Journal of Language and Translation: 7–40, 2008), which is a holistic model for the evaluation of poetry translation. Although such an enterprise deserves appreciation in its own right, the model seems to carry some shortcomings. This study was thus aimed at identifying the shortcomings, removing them, and finally proposing a semiotic model through combining it with the model devised by Sojoodi (Applied Semiotics, Nashr-e-Gheseh, 2006). The resultant hybrid model was eventually applied to "Another Birth", a poem by the famous Iranian poetess, Forough Farrokhzad, translated into English by Salami (Another Birth, 2008), to show the applicability of its pragmatic features in comparison with that of the stated holistic model.
The main objective of this study was to make a corpus-based comparison between two English translations of the Holy Quran in terms of metadiscourse features application and distribution. For this purpose, two English translations of the Holy Quran by Itani (2012) and Yousef Ali (1992) were selected as the corpus of the study. For the theoretical framework, the model of metadiscourse features proposed by Hyland (2005) was utilized. In order to check the distribution of metadiscourse features, Sketch Engine corpus software was used. The quantitative analysis of the data revealed that interactive metadiscourse features were higher in frequency than the interactional ones. Also, it was observed that within the interactive metadiscourse features, transitions were the most frequent type as compared with hedges which were the most frequent among the interactional ones. Finally, while in Yousef Ali’s translation, interactive metadiscourse features were the main trend, in Itani’s translation, the interactional metadiscourse features were the dominant attribute. The findings of this study have useful implications for researchers in translation as well as contrastive and corpus-based studies.
Back translation is a common technique to assess the accuracy of translation, but its application in different contexts is often subject to controversy. The aim of the present paper is first to check the appropriateness of back translation for movie subtitling purposes on the one hand and on the other, to see which technique leads to a better translation, collaborative translation or back translation. To achieve this aim, 50 Persian sentences with problems in their translations were randomly selected from Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone subtitled by Kalhor (2001), the most commonly used subtittled version of this movie in Iran, and tested through back translation technique. The participants of the study were 90 undergraduate students of English translation at the University of Isfahan who had already watched the movie. The new translations suggested by the participants were then compared with the translations made in a collaborative way. A comparison of different versions of the sentences proved that back translation is an appropriate technique for testing the translation of subtitles. It was also revealed that students involved in collaborative translation outperformed those using the back translation technique.