New Perspectives on Cohesion and Coherence: Implications for Translation
Kerstin Kunz, University of Heidelberg, Germany
Ekaterina Lapshinova-Koltunski, Saarland University, Germany
Katrin Menzel, Saarland University, Germany
Deadline: 1st August 2014
The panel will investigate textual relations of cohesion and coherence in translation and multilingual text production with a strong focus on innovative methods of empirical analysis, as well as technology and computation. Given the amount of multilingual computation that is taking place, this topic is important for both human and machine translation, and further multilingual studies.
Cohesion refers to the text-internal relationship of linguistic elements that are overtly linked via lexical and grammatical devices across sentence boundaries to be understood as a text (Halliday/Hasan 1976:2-4, Widdowson 1979:87). The recognition of coherence in a text is more subjective as it involves text- and reader-based features and refers to the logical flow of interrelated ideas in a text, thus establishing a mental textual world (cf. Crystal 2008:85, Widdowson 1979:312). There is a connection between these two concepts in that relations of cohesion can be regarded as explicit indicators of meaning relations in a text and, hence, contribute to its overall coherence.
The aim of this panel is to bring together scholars analyzing cohesion and coherence from different research perspectives that cover translation-relevant topics: language contrast, translationese and machine translation. What these approaches share is that they invevestigate instantiations of discourse phenomena in a multilingual context. And moreover, language comparison is based on empirical data. The challenges here can be identified with respect to the following methodological questions:
1. How to arrive at a cost-effective operationalization of the annotation process when dealing with a broader range of discourse phenomena?
2. Which statistical techniques are needed and are adequate for the analysis? And which methods can be combined for data interpretation?
3. Which applications of the knowledge acquired are possible in multilingual computation, especially in machine translation?
The contributions of different research groups involved in our panel reflect these questions: On the one hand, some contributions will concentrate on procedures to analyse cohesion and coherence, e.g. their (semi-)automatic identification and disambiguation in comparable and parallel corpora, as done in annotation work described in Nedoluzhko (2013), Cartoni et al. (2013) or Lapshinova & Kunz (2014), as well as crowd annotation experiments, as in Kolhatkar et al. (2013). On the other hand, our panel will include empirical analyses operating with innovative methods for data interpretation, rather than traditional contrastive analysis, e.g. statistical analyses such as univariate methods, as in Zinsmeister (2012) for abstract anaphors, machine learning techniques as in Nguy et al. (2011) for coreference, or consistency measures, as in Guillou (2013) for lexical cohesion. And finally, the papers in the panel will also include studies on the application of knowledge on cohesion and coherence in translation. Special interest here is on machine translation, as there is an increasing interest in this community to improve translation quality by adding information on cohesive phenomena, see e.g. Popescu-Belis et al (2012), Wong & Kit (2012), Symne et al. (2013) and Meyer & Webber (2013).
Targeting the questions raised above and addressing them together from different research angles, the present panel will contribute to moving empirical translation studies ahead.
For informal enquiries: [eDOTlapshinovaATmxDOTuni-saarlandDOTde]
Kerstin Kunz holds an interim professorship at the Institute of Translation and Interpreting at the University of Heidelberg, Germany, where she teaches in several BA and MA programs. She finished her PhD on Nominal Coreference in English and German in 2009. Since then, she has been involved in various empirical research projects dealing with properties of translations and English German contrasts on the level of lexicogrammar and discourse. Together with Erich Steiner, she currently has a corpus-based project at the Department of Applied Linguistics, Translation and Interpreting at Saarland University, Germany. The GECCo project explores different types of cohesive relations in English and German, contrasting languages, originals and translations as well as written and spoken registers.
Ekaterina Lapshinova-Koltunski is a postdoctoral researcher at Saarland University, Germany. She finished her PhD on semi-automatic extraction and classification of corpus data at Institute for Natural Language Processing in Stuttgart, Germany in 2010. After that, she has been working in several corpus-based projects related to language variation, i.e. in terms of register or production type. She co-authored several articles on various aspects of corpus-based contrastive language analysis, as well as diachronic register analysis. She is involved in the GECCo project, in which her main interest lies on semi-automatic methods to identify cohesive phenomena, as well as statistical analysis of their distribution across different dimensions. Since 2012 she has also been working on variation in translation caused by different factors, such as register or translation method resulting in translation varieties (including both human and machine translation).
Katrin Menzel studied Conference Interpreting and Translation Studies in Saarbrücken, Germany. She has been working as a teaching and research staff member at the Department of Applied Linguistics, Translating and Interpreting at Saarland University since 2011. Katrin is involved in the research project "GECCo" on cohesion in English and German and works on the case study of ellipses as cohesive ties for her PhD thesis.
Timeline for submission within a panel:
By 1st August 2014: Deadline for submissions of abstracts
By 25th October 2014: notification of acceptance of abstracts
The deadline for submission will be strictly enforced and no extension will be given. Please, bear the deadlines in mind when preparing and submitting your proposal.
Modality of Submission:
Please note that individual contributions to panels must be submitted through the START Management Conference System (https://www.softconf.com/f/iatis2015/) before the 1st August 2014.
To assure consistency in the peer-review assessment process, abstract for oral communications in thematic panels must be submitted in English only. However, the preferred language of presentation, English, Portuguese or Spanish, should be made clear in the abstract submission online form on the START system.
One-presentation & one-submission rules
Proponents are entitled to submit only one abstract (as a first author) throughout the whole organizational process and, in case it is accepted, to present only one paper (as a first author) at the conference, be it a communication (within or beyond a thematic panel), a poster or a PhD presentation. The one-presentation rule does not apply to panel convenors (provided they do not present a paper within their own panel) nor to participants speaking in plenary sessions, roundtables and workshops.
The Belo Horizonte organizing team strongly recommends proponents to consult the different presentation formats and corresponding deadlines before submitting.
Criteria for reviewing papers submitted to panel convenors:
Relevance to panel theme
Contribution to existing body of knowledge on the subject
Theoretically grounded on relevant previous work
Well-designed and appropriate method (clearly stated questions and procedures for data collection and analysis
Coherent framework and appropriate academic register
Original work (new data, approach, method)
Evidence of completed work or strong promise of work being completed in time for the conference
High quality abstracts not chosen for their panel – because of lack of fit with the topic or because of lack of space to accommodate within the chosen panel – may be forwarded for consideration in the open general sessions.
Proposals that are not of high quality, whether or not they fit with a panel, should be rejected.