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Title: A contrastive study of German and Maltese constituent order and its application in translation practices
Authors: Muscat, Derek (2011)
Keywords: Generative grammar
German language
Maltese language
Issue Date: 2011
Citation: Muscat, D. (2011). A contrastive study of German and Maltese constituent order and its application in translation practices (Master's dissertation).
Abstract: This study aims to investigate the order of clausal constituents in German and Maltese. Clausal constituent order has been tackled from different points of view in the literature. In generative grammar, constituent order is perceived to be the outcome of a set of interacting rules and principles which determine the surface structure of a clause. Typologists, in contrast, observe and analyse constituent order variation cross-linguistically with a view to discovering the constraints underlying this variation. In both approaches, the relative constituent order flexibility observed in many languages is attributed both to grammatical and non grammatical properties The corpus-based investigation presented in this study lies at the crossroads of language description, contrastive linguistics and translation studies. It compares and contrasts the linear order variation in German and Maltese, and explores its effects on translation from German into Maltese. It also discusses the impact which different factors, such as givenness, definiteness, animacy and constituent heaviness, may have on linearisation decisions in both languages. This study indicates that these factors are all at work in influencing decisions regarding German and Maltese constituent order. Furthermore, it also turns out that, while Maltese is more flexible at clausal level than German, the latter tends to feature more variation in written discourse. In line with previous research on constituent order, the present contrastive analysis concentrates primarily on the description of clauses with two nominal verb arguments. Although, in principle, the descriptions and discussions in the present work are theory-neutral, the empirically-based insights concerning the order of constituents in the languages compared, especially in the case of Maltese, may have several implications for the future development of a theoretical model of constituent order.
Description: M.A.LINGUISTICS
Appears in Collections:Dissertations - InsLin - 1996-2014

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