Lexikos - Volume 7, Issue 7, 1997
Volumes & issues
Volume 7, Issue 7, 1997
Issues in the planning of a multilingual explanatory dictionary of Chemistry for South African studentsAuthor Adelia CarstensSource: Lexikos 7, pp 1 –24 (1997)More Less
Developing human potential and actively promoting science and technology are among the priorities of the present South African government. Significant progress in these areas can only be made if relevant education and training are provided timeously. Surveys conducted by overseas as well as local researchers indicate that mother-tongue education is one of the measures to improve learning. While mother-tongue education at secondary and tertiary level is at present not provided to speakers of African languages, compromise solutions have to be offered, such as multilingual explanatory special-field dictionaries. By providing linguistic and encyclopedic information in English, Afrikaans and two or more of the African languages the concepts of the subject-field are made accessible via the language(s) of wider communication as well as via the mother tongue of the student. Although there are many difficulties and potential pitfalls awaiting terminographers and special-field experts who attempt a project of this nature, substantial preliminary work that has already been done with regard to a quadrilingual explanatory dictionary of chemistry indicated that this ideal is not out of reach. The compilers believe that successful completion of the project, as well as favourable results, will verify the hypotheses that served as points of departure for the project.
Author llse FeinauerSource: Lexikos 7, pp 25 –44 (1997)More Less
Arguments in metalexicographic literature on the status of subword and multiword lexical items resulted in a more comprehensive lemma tic treatment of these lexical Hems in the latest editions of Afrikaans descriptionptive dictionaries, e.g. Woordeboek van die Afrikaanse Taal Volume IX (WAT), Verklarende Handwoordeboek van die Afrikaanse Taal (HAT), Nasionale Woordeboek (NW), Verk/arende Afrikaanse Woordeboek (V A), and Basiswoordeboek van Afrikaans (BA).
Author D.J. PrinslooSource: Lexikos 7, pp 45 –57 (1997)More Less
One of the great challenges to compiling better dictionaries for the African languages is to develop sound strategies and procedures for planning the structure of the dictionaries. In this regard all the structural components of a dictionary, including the macrostructure, microstructure, mediostructure and access structure, come into play. Most dictionaries for African languages, including Sepedi dictionaries, fail even at this level. In this article the planning of especially the macrostructure in respect of one lexical category which has been unsatisfactorily treated in Sepedi dictionaries, namely the adjective, will be attempted. Secondly the lemmatisation of adjectives in six Sepedi dictionaries will be critically evaluated. This will be done with the emphasis on various talexicographical aspects.
Author Mohamed Helmy HelielSource: Lexikos 7, pp 58 –69 (1997)More Less
Recently three dictionaries of Arabic synonyms were published with the aim of helping Arabic learners, writers and translators. Though Classical Arabic lexicography distinguishes itself in the field of synonymy, Modem Standard Arabic lacks reliable dictionaries in the field and hence the importance of analysing these three dictionaries, identifying their deficiencies and suggesting remedies to help establish a sound basis for a user-friendly dictionary of Arabic synonyms. This paper deals with certain lexicographical features closely related to synonymy, Le. concerning corpus: selection of headwords and derivatives, arrangements of headwords, contextualization, collocations, figurative usage, equivalence, polysemy, register and style.
Author Francis E. KnowlesSource: Lexikos 7, pp 70 –93 (1997)More Less
This paper is concerned with the language professional discourse communities use for their internal communication. The characteristics of these languages for special pwposes (LSPs) are many and varied, as well as being underresearched. The focus adopted here is to examine the phenomenon of multiword units, many of which are orthographic pluralities designating conceptual singularities. It is important to recognise at the outset that colocation is not the same as collocation. Analysis and systematisation of these textual ""c1usterings"" is intended to separate them into two radically different types of entity: multiword segments possessing terminological status; and collocative material. The methods used to achieve the above objective are both qualitative, i.e. micro-environmental analysis, and quantitative, i.e. statistical patterning exhibiting a certain level of frequency and constancy. Collocational material quoted here also shows by its configuration that discourse communities use collocations to which the general public are not inured and with which they may not necessarily be familiar at all.
Author James Salehe MdeeSource: Lexikos 7, pp 94 –106 (1997)More Less
This paper compares and contrasts dictionary use and needs of language learners at the University of York in the United Kingdom and at the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. Five aspects are discussed in this study viz. dictionaries used, instructions and guidance on dictionary use, the functions for which students use a dictionary, information categories sought or lacking, metalanguage in the dictionaries and how it has been used to explicate the information categories. These five aspects are discussed in relation to the observations made by the subjects as reflected in the data collected. From the data analysis are made some generalizations on how the language students of the two universities use their dictionaries and the lexicographical needs of the language learners in general and of each group in particular. It is concluded that language learners do not look up the same information in a dictionary because each has specific language problems.
Source: Lexikos 7, pp 107 –129 (1997)More Less
There has recently been an increasing awareness of the importance of large collections of texts (corpora) used as resources in machine translation research. The process of creating or extending machine translation lexicons is time-consuming, difficult and costly in tenns of human involvement. The contribution that corpora can make towards the reduction in cost, time and complexity has been explored by several research groups. This article descriptionbes a system that has been developed to identify word-pairs, utilizing an aligned bilingual (English-Afrikaans) corpus in order to extend a bilingual lexicon with the words and their translations that are not present in the lexicon. New translations for existing entries can be added and the system also applies grammar rules for the identification of the grammatical category of each word-pair. This system limits the involvement of the human translator and has a positive impact on the time, cost and effort needed to extend a bilingual lexicon.
Author Catherine TravisSource: Lexikos 7, pp 130 –152 (1997)More Less
This paper presents a semantic analysis of three English words denoting positive character ttaits, namely kind, considerate and thoughtful. These three words are closely related, and the differences (and similarities) in their meanings can be very difficult to pinpoint. It shall be shown that modem dictionaries demonsttate a great deal of circularity in their definitions of these words, reflecting the closeness of their meanings. An analysis of usage examples provides evidence on the basis of which their differences can be understood. Some of the differences that shall be noted are the following: kind and thoughtful necessarily involve doing something for another person, while considerate does not; kind involves not wanting anyone to feel bad, considerate involves not wanting anyone to feel bad as a result of one's actions, and thoughtful focuses on a specific situation another is in, and not wanting them to feel bad in that situation; kind involves wanting to do something for another's good, while considerate involves wanting to avoid something that may harm another; and both considerate and thoughtful imply some kind of thinking about another before one acts, as reflected in their morphology. The Natural Semantic Metalanguage approach, as developed by Wierzbicka (1972, 1980, 1996) and colleagues, is used to propose definitions for these words, with the aim of exhaustively capturing their meaning. and clearly delineating their range of use. Such definitions can be particulitrly valuable to second language learners, and can provide a basis for cross-linguistic, and cross-cultural, comparisons of related concepts.
Author M. Lynne MurphySource: Lexikos 7, pp 153 –164 (1997)More Less
This article examines the treabnent of racial labels in monolingual English dictionaries of South Africa. Considering past controversies regarding racist language in Afrikaans dictionaries and considering the. changing role of English in democratic South Africa, we can expect that English dictionaries will be more carefully scrutinized in future for potential offence. With the boom in the South African lexicography industry, now is a prime time to reflect on the issues involved and suggest courses of action. This article places South African English dictionary traditions in a national and international context, by comparing the traditions and the roles of the languages in Afrikaans, British and American lexicographical traditions. While South African English lexicography is rooted in the British tradition, its possible evolution on the American model is demonstrated, and thus the role of the dictionary in a postcolonial community is briefly discussed.
Source: Lexikos 7, pp 165 –178 (1997)More Less
A Contrasting View on Bilingual Dictionaries in South Africa and Japan. Both dictionaries that combine Afrikaans and African languages and dictionaries that combine Japanese and Western languages incorporate unrelated languages. In this respect lexicographers in Japan and South Africa have the potential for fruitful cooperation. Nevertheless, major differences between bilingual dictionaries in South Africa and Japan came to the fore during the transfonning of the A/rikJllJnstzoeloe-woordeboek (A/rikJllJnstzulu Dictionary) of Kotz~ and Wela into an Afrikaans-Japanese dictionary. Differences in microstructure include the use of phonetic transcriptions, indication of the distinction between transitive and intransitive verbs, the ordering of example-sentences and the use of certain symbols as aids. The difference in social context is reflected in the choice of sensitive lexical items and the size of the dictionaries. These differences had to be accounted for in the remaking.
Author Marietta AlbertsSource: Lexikos 7, pp 179 –191 (1997)More Less
This article deals with the project on legal tenninology in the African languages. It focuses on tenninology aspects relating to the coining of tenns for the legal profession. Tenninology development in South Africa has been hampered by a number of sociolinguistic factors. During recent years South Africa has seen considerable changes regarding the function of the indigenous languages, and this situation gave rise to an urgent need for tenninology in various subject fields and knowledge domains. A demand arose for legal tenninology in African languages. This need for legal tenninology gave rise to the establishment of the Centre for Legal Terminology in African Languages. The aim of the Centre is to make legal tenninology more accessible to the local indigenous population. The background of the legal tenninology project is given and the various principles on which the working procedure is based, are discussed. Various aspects regarding the present project (such as financing, time-schedule, training and tenninological problems encountered) are treated.
Author Vincent M. ChandaSource: Lexikos 7, pp 192 –206 (1997)More Less
Sign language as used by deaf communities, is a real and fully-fledged human language, not based on any spoken language, and not universal in the sense of there being only one sign language worldwide. A deaf community is a linguistic minority, but a linguistic minority with special linguistic needs because of the very nature of sign language. In Zambia, like in the vast majority of other Third World countries, the linguistic needs of deaf and hard-of-hearing people have been ignored. This article examines the genesis and implementation of a dictionary project for sign Ianguage, the Zambian Sign language Dictionary Project, regarded as a first step towards the development of a Zambian National Sign language. The article highlights the specificity of sign language lexicography.