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The sport terminology translation hardship from English into Ukrainian
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of Applied Linguistics


The sport terminology translation hardship from English into Ukrainian”

Presented by:

the student of the group PRL-61s

Kinal T.M.

Supervised by:

Assistant Professor of

Applied Linguistics department

Senuk O.Ya.

Consulted by:

Assistant Professor of

CAD department

Sviridova T.V.

Lviv 2008

Table of contents

I. Linguistic background. The sport terminology translation hardship from English into Ukrainian

1. Sport discourse

1.1 Sport metaphor

2. Language for specific purposes

2.1 Growth of language for specific purposes

2.2 Why sport English is a Language for Specific Purposes

3. Terminology and system of terms

3.1 The way the term appears

3.2 Term definition

3.3 Semantic features of a term

3.4 Morphological structure of sport terms in English

3.5 Ways of terminology translation

3.6 Sport terminology translation hardship

4. The analysis of the Soccer glossary

II. Solution of the problem by means of Computational Linguistic. The creation of on-line dictionary of sport terms

1. The PHP programming language

2. The program product creation



Nowadays a lot of scientists work on the issue of development and setting Ukrainian sport terminology and phraseology. It is obvious that this issue is very important. A lot of people go in for sports, are interested in it and use sport terms in everyday life. The implementation of Ukrainian system of sport terms for everyone to use it (for sportsmen, amateurs, fans) is of great importance. The English origin of terms complicates the establishment of Ukrainian sport lexicon. Such Ukrainian scientists as Balaban T., Vakylenko M., Kotukova O., Marks K., Shynevuch B. dedicate a lot of their efforts and time for this issue. Scientist try to find out the origin of the word and their equivalents in Ukrainian (they create these equivalents using transliteration, calque or descriptive methods). But the adequate translation hardship is not solved for today.

The aim of this work is to investigate sport terminology in English and ways of its adequate translation into Ukrainian. The sport terms translation deals with all the terminology translation hardships and equivalent search with account of lexical, grammatical, stylistic and communicative information.

The main objectives include the following:

  1. to analyse lexical peculiarities of Soccer terminology in English;

  2. to analyse their translation methods;

  3. to develop an on-line translation dictionary of sport terms based on Soccer sport art.

The research object of this diploma paper is English sport comments and their Ukrainian translation as well English on-line lexicographical databases.

^ The research subject of this diploma paper is European football sport terminology in modern English and translation of these terms into Ukrainian.

Methods of investigation:

Morphological analysis of English sport terms and their Ukrainian equivalents;

Contrastive analysis of English sport terms and their equivalents;

Theoretical value may lie in consistent analysis of English sport terms from the viewpoint of their external and semantic structure and ways of their faithful translation.

^ Practical value of the paper is based on the translation of sport terminology and creating sport terms on-line dictionary. On-line dictionary is supposed to facilitate the language acquisition for language learners, sportsman and amateurs and also be useful for translators and interpreters. Especially today, as the great championship Euro 2012 will take place in Ukraine. Many people from different countries will come here, so we should be ready to speak with them on the same level. But it is not only the problem of understanding. The main task is to translate these terms using Ukrainian means of verbalization and to implement them in general use in order to make our language more pure.

There is no need to speak about the importance of dictionaries for those who studies or investigates languages. The demand for on-line dictionaries is particularly high in time of IT progress. Nowadays there is no on-line sport dictionary available, especially English-Ukrainian one. That’s why, I decided to create such software for everyone to use it for free and joy.

The on-line dictionary of sport terms will be represented in the practical part of the given diploma paper. It has been developed in PHP software environment. PHP was designed to be easy to learn and use. PHP is a scripting language originally designed for producing dynamic web pages. Released under the PHP License, the Free Software Foundation considers it to be free software. PHP is a widely-used general-purpose scripting language that is especially suited for web development and can be embedded into HTML. It generally runs on a web server, taking PHP code as its input and creating web pages as output. It can be deployed on most web servers and on almost every operating system and platform free of charge. PHP is installed on more than 20 million websites and 1 million web servers. The most recent major release of PHP was version 5.2.6 on May 1, 2008.

I. Linguistic background

In sport you either know the language or you don't - you're either an insider or an outsider”

Brian Coleman

^ 1. Sport Discourse
The sport discourse is very complicated phenomenon. A lot of studies deal with it: linguistics, psychology, philosophy, history, sociology, semiotics and many others. This issue is of great interest for the investigation because communication is very important for the society. Nikolayeva T.M., Karasik V.I., Kybrjakova E.S. discover this subject, but none of them can give the definition for this notion. We understand it as a text that is used in some special conditions for special purposes.

Sport comments are aimed at wide audience and should cater for the entertainment, leisure and relaxation. It also is of great importance for the mass media. When we hear sport comment – it usually is a monologue of the commentator who by means of language can express the movement, activity, shift of events and meanwhile analyse it.

Texts in sport discourse may be written for several purposes. They may inform people of an ongoing match, give a technical evaluation of the match, introduce a player or a team. Verbal comments are the part of publicistic style and its genre varieties. This genre does not have strict composition (unlike written texts) and here may be noted only the beginning and the end. The place of the game, participants, the weather, stadium, the time are usually mentioned at the beginning but as a game is an action and things may change, this information can be also mentioned in the middle and at the end of a comment. These data are usually mentioned in a speech flow when there nothing important is taking place during the game to fill the gap and not to be silent. Commentator usually reviews the game and make some conclusions at the end. The central part of the comment is denoted to everything connected with the play. Verbal comments are usually fulfilled with commentator’s emotions that make it more interesting and critical.

The text producer intends to give information. While doing so, he usually gives facts, that is, past achievements of the teams, how they qualified for the finals, who is their coach at the moment, who are their well known players, what are their aims in the championship. He tells this very clearly, so unless a person is totally indifferent to this subject, we can say this is second order informativity. In this case, the person will understand what the text is about and the intention of the text producer will be achieved.

In fact, football reports rarely provide only news; many people who read the sports pages already know the result, and may even have seen the game live on television. This helps to explain some of the vivid language used in newspaper reporting, as its function is not just to give the score. Reports also have to give opinions and explanations, and engage the reader on an emotional level. And as we have seen elsewhere in this edition, some newspapers sell copies by being sensationalist. There is also an obsession with after-match quotes from players or managers; another ‘angle’ on the game has to be found. Of course these are not always as coherent and useable as journalists would like. Mihir Bose, a football journalist with ‘The Times’, talked about how he and fellow journalists would get together after the post-match conference to agree on the most acceptable and reportable version of the manager’s stream of consciousness and non-sequiturs. In other cases it is those very memorable phrases from post-match interviews, (‘the boy done good’; ‘we wus robbed’; ‘it was a game of two halves’; ‘I’m over the moon’), which are part of an affectionate football folk-lore and language, gently parodied in places like the satirical magazine Private Eye. Even the articulate are prone to the linguistic faux pas: when the England player Tony Adams was asked before the England/Poland European Football Championship game in September 1999 what the atmosphere in the Legia Warsaw stadium would be like, he replied, ‘Intense – I think the Polish crowd will be very compassionate’(Guardian, Thursday 9 September, 1999).

The reports in English newspapers after the Poland/England game of 8 September 1999, and Brian’s report of the Manchester United /Bayern Munich game of 26 May 1999, illustrate a common metaphor used in football reporting, that of war. It is also drew on the reputation of German football teams to describe the German's defence (itself a military term), as 'well-drilled’, and a 'solid rearguard’, which withstands the attempts of Manchester United to ‘attack’ and 'probe' its ranks. The sense of chaos is compounded by the way the united fans are described as 'hordes', while the Manchester goalkeeper advances near the end hoping to 'cause havoc'. It is somehow fitting that it is the United player with the nickname 'the Baby-Faced Assassin’, who supplies the final coup de grace.

Such military language was also reflected in the reports after the Poland/England game on September, 8. A sample of quotes from just one of the tabloids, The Mirror, from Thursday September, 9 illustrates this. The ‘old enemy’ Poland, (remembering Tomaszewski’s heroics 26 years earlier), had come back to haunt England's qualifying 'campaign', and had thwarted Alan Shearer and his ‘troops’. During the first half hour of the game England had been ‘under siege’ and Martin Keown had received a yellow card for ‘taking out’ Mirosław Trzeciak. Scholes, who in the earlier game that year at Wembley had ‘plundered’ a hat trick, was now kept subdued. Pearce, however, was magnificent; he ‘always has heart for the battle’.

We should not be surprised that the language used to describe matches between countries should display elements of nationalism or even jingoism. Ryszard Kapuściński has written about two South American countries going to war over the result of a soccer match, and George Orwell saw sport as ‘an unfailing cause of ill will’.

The relationship between sport and metaphor is two-way; not only are many sporting terms metaphorical in origin, drawing on other fields of activity for their semantic connection (as with the military images mentioned above), but sport acts as a source of metaphors too. This is best seen in the example of cricket, which for a long time was viewed as representing essential English characteristics such as fair play, team spirit, and an acceptance of victory or defeat with equal grace. As Vita Sackville-West, the close friend of Virginia Woolf, wrote in 1947, ‘the Englishman is seen at his best the moment that another man starts throwing a ball at him’. The way in which the game of cricket is viewed as a metaphor for life is reflected in the use of such expressions as ‘it’s not cricket’ (it’s not fair), ‘to be on a sticky wicket’ (to be in a difficult situation), and ‘off one’s own bat’ (without help from anyone else). Of course language evolves and changes, and cricketing metaphors and images are not as common nowadays as they were thirty years ago (Sporting Idioms, gives a fuller range of others in popular use). However it is still the case that cricket provides a romantic, rural ideal for some people, as seen in former Prime Minister John Major’s definition of Britishness as ‘long shadows on county cricket grounds’. Such an image is restricted; it has its roots in the past, and is mainly applicable to England and not the rest of the United Kingdom.

Recently there has been a notable increase in both the quantity and quality of sportswriting appearing in daily papers, Sunday broadsheets, glossy magazines, and bookshops (with a special chain of bookstores, ‘Sportspages’, now catering for the literate fan). Much of the increased interest initially came from football; not only did the sport become very fashionable in the past ten years, but fanzines also offered a fresh perspective on the game. These magazines, produced by and for fans, can be irreverent, controversial, offensive, and anti-establishment, attacking the growing commercialisation of the game, and defending the rights of the ‘real’ fan. They are printed in opposition to official club magazines, and although the quality of the production and the writing is varied, they have shaken up football writing. Every club will have at least one fanzine, and the big clubs several. What they helped to do was show that ‘fanatical’ devotion to a soccer team was not synonymous with illiteracy, racism, and hooliganism. This message was reinforced by the book and film success of Nick Hornby’s Fever Pitch, chronicling his love affair with Arsenal Football Club. Nowadays football is not the only sport being written about, and sport attracts print from Prime Ministers to Poet Laureates.

It should me mentioned that sport comment as a discourse genre takes place supported by the illuminated indicator boards at a stadium that gives additional visual information (here belong also the stadium, the audience, the play, the score). In general sport comment is a speech piece that should be completed and ordered. It is verbal spontaneous monologue, but its main hardship is that it must be completed and well structured.
^ 1.1 Sport metaphor
Metaphor is one of the implements that help us to see and understand the world. We should distinguish metaphor and symbols, concepts or signs. Metaphor is the result of the semantic process when a form of a linguistic unit is transposed from one object of designation to another on the basis of a certain similarity between these objects as reflected in the speaker’s mind ( snow melts – time flows, money melts). Metaphors may be used on different types of similarity, for example, similarity of shape, function, position, colour, temperature, etc. E.g. cold reason, the foot of mountain, to catch an idea. Words denoting animals and their actions may be used metaphorically to denote human qualities. E.g. a fox (“a crafty person”), to wolf (“to eat greedily”).

Metaphors are one of productive elements for the discourse. Discourse is a communication delivered into the situation. The field of it is the type of activity a person is engaged in expressed through language.

The main field of this research is sport terminology. For this matter Lackoff and Johnson marked out six main types of soccer metaphor:

  1. Sport is war:

- the game is a battle: A great game of soccer with two superb sides battling for supremacy. Битва футбольних титанів.

- the football field is the war field: Holland mounted their first attack on the right flank. Стадіон – полігон для експериментів, простір для маневрів.

- the ball is weapon: Kaka blasted the ball past Kahn. A rocket shot, a snap-shot, a bullet header. Розстріл воріт, постріл у ворота.

2. A team is a mechanism:

- a player is a part of the mechanism: Makelele is a crutial part of Chelsea machine. Схема гри, обробка м’яча.

- a team is machine: he Galacticos have hardly been firing on all cylinders in league this season. Динамо на всіх парах несеться до перемоги.

3. A game is a travel:

- movement of players is traveling: But this only allowed Robbens freedom to roam down the left flank. Реєс вільно розгулював по правому флангу.

- the tournament is a travel: Chelsea march on to the Fifth round, route to the final. Путівка у півфінал.

4. The game is a buiding:

- football field is a castle. The gates are the front door: Neither side could break the deadlock, the defensive wall. Підібрати ключ до воріт суперника, відкрити ворота.

- the play of a team is a building: to break the defensive wall, to build attacks. Геометрія футболу, фундамент атак.

5. The team is a group; the tournament is a group:

- a play is a job, a player is a worker: Robin van Persie was dismissed in the 45th minute. Ювелірна передача, каліграфічний удар.

- role – home: Duff is an exciting player equally at home on the wing or in the center. На лівому фланзі Робен почував себе як вдома.

6. Sport is art:

- game is a play, players are artists: Zidane and Materazzi had been the key actors in the drama all night. Суперники помінялися ролями, маестро, віртуоз, сценарій фіналу.

- game is music: Newcastle seem to have found their rhythm. Дует форвардів, дери жер.
Metaphors that are connected with orientation in space are called oriantational metaphor. Metaphor orientations are based on our physical and cultural experience. Defensive game is related with the notion of depth, attack with the notion of sharpness: Counter – attack started from deep in their penalty area. Діяти з глибини; гострота атаки.

Among all the analysed expressions the most frequent is “Sport is war” model. Most of the metaphor models are universal and it is an essential part of the sport discourse.
^ 2. Language for specific purposes
Specialized lexis is not found somewhere in between the units of common vocabulary, but forms its sublanguages, organized according to the pattern of language in general, which, however, are smaller and professionally oriented. Sublanguages are not used by professionals only, but also by large groups of people as professional argot. Thus, sublanguage is a subvariety of language used in a particular field or by a particular social group and characterized especially by distinctive vocabulary.

Such professional orientation of lexis ranging from top scientific terminology to professional argot allows us to speak about the existence of a number of autonomous and smaller specialized sublanguages, or languages for specific purposes (LSP) within an all-national language. The term “sublanguage” arose in the 60s of XX c. and designated the complex of means (basically lexical ones) used in texts on a particular subject. On the one hand sublanguages are richer than general language – because of a great number of specialized words. On the other hand, they are poorer because they use only a part of the expressive means of the language in general. The expressive means of a sublanguage develop lopsidedly, because here only those linguistic elements develop that are required by a particular professional activity. The language in general becomes a certain background for it, just a reserve from which necessary means are borrowed.

A professional sublanguage that embraces the whole trade but remains obscure to non-professionals should be distinguished from the so-called lingua franca, i.e. freely functioning languages that include a certain international fund of special (but not narrowly professional) lexis and thus understandable to many. Such languages arose among sailors, travelers, merchants etc. Later in Europe Latin became the lingua franca of tradesmen, and in the East Arabic played such a role for a long time.

Professional sublanguages as autonomous language systems within one national language are not strictly isolated from one another. They all form a part of the national language. Persons who use a certain sublanguage usually have a command of one or a number of other sublanguages and may serve the transition of borrowings from one system into another.

In many sublanguages international elements prevail over the national ones.

    1. ^ Growth of languages for specific purposes

The term “languages for specific purposes” (LSP) arose in the 70s in the countries where German is spoken. It is extremely close to the term “sublanguage” because any LSP is based on specialized lexis.

In terms of grammar, LSP is poorer than the general language, whose syntax is deliberately developed. LSP is, on the contrary, marked by poor and frequently repeated constructions. Thus, many scholars regard LSP as a complex of terms and typical constructions.

LSPs are usually poor in expressive means. It lacks the variety of stylistic devices found in literary texts. The reason is that expressiveness interferes with conceptual accuracy.

Non-terms in an LSP are a usual phenomenon because they serve the purpose of communication. Whatever the level of specialization, any text should include general vocabulary units for communicational purposes. However, each LSP has a certain set of common words it employs and their number is rather limited.

A great contribution to the study of functional-stylistic varieties of scientific, professionally oriented and commercial texts all functioning as Language for Specific Purposes (LSP) has been made by western researchers. The history of LSP emergence and development starts after World War II. “The notion of LSP appeared in the 1960’s as a result of scientific, technological and economic revolutions that required the knowledge of the English language within a certain type of scientific and professional activity”. However, the study of language was activity-oriented even before, though it was not realized. The development of LSP has 5 stages:

  1. register analysis;

  2. discourse analysis;

  3. target situation analysis;

  4. skills and strategies;

  5. learning-centered approach.

Now we can also speak about the rise of the sixth stage of LSP development – it is learner-oriented approach. The main distinctive feature of this approach is that focus is on the learner with his/her needs and interests. Similarly, the teaches have recently been speaking of the learning, not teaching, process which first of all implies learner’s striving for and ability of learning. The last for stages of LSP development reveal considerable deviation form language linguistic analysis and enthusiasm for teaching methodology. English for Academic Purposes as a functional-stylistic variety of LSP is divided into English for General Academic Purposes (EGAP) and English for Specific Academic Purposes (ESAP).

The latter deals with the elaboration of principles of scientific text logical arrangement, the identification of structural identity and dissimilarity of scientific texts, the revelation of their lexical, grammatical and stylistic peculiarities in various fields of science. The language of EIRS (English for International Relations Students) researchers is part of ESAP, therefore its research includes linguistic structure analysis, lexical content study as well as the study of grammar and style.

LSP research that is a combined linguistic and methodological study of the English language is of major topicality. It is connected with the fact that the aim of this trend of research is the solution of a serious contradiction between traditional linguistic studies and the existing practice of professional language in higher educational institutions.

    1. Why sport English is a Language for Specific Purposes

We can state that Language of Sport is Language for specific purpses as it has all these characteristics:

  1. it is defined to meet specific needs of the learners.

  2. it is related and designed for specific field.

  3. it is usually used in specific situations.

  4. it is designed both for professional users and amateurs.

We can see that Language for Specific Purpose (in this case Sport language) can but is not necessarily concerned with a specific discipline, nor does it have to be aimed at a certain age group or ability range. It is created for everyone in general and for each person in particular. If we agree with this definition, we will see how broad LSP really is. In fact, one may ask 'What is the difference between the LSP and General English?' The answer is quite simple, "in theory nothing, in practice a great deal".
^ 3. Terminology and system of terms
Terminology is a subsystem of the general lexicon, which means that it must be in compliance with the general lexical standard. According to Šipka, the difference between the term and non-term is the following:

• Term has lexical meaning;

• The essential form of the term is the written one whereas it is the pronounced

form with the lexeme in the general lexicon;

• Terms are the consequence of conscious intervention;

• There is terminological correlation between different languages;

• Synchronic dimension is particularly important for the term, as opposed to diachronic one as a characteristic of the non-term (D. Šipka, 1998).

One of the word formation processes in terminology is borrowing words and abbreviations from other languages. The number of such words in the sports terminology is high (in the corpus of terms in football, it is as high as 57.47%). Most of the loan words are of English origin. The most common reason for lexical borrowing is a lexical gap for a particular notion. Before the borrowed term is integrated into the lexicon, it should be adapted on the semantic, phonological and morphological levels so that it may function as the domesticated one.
^ 3.1 The way the term appears
The number of terms in developed countries usually exaggerates the number of usual words and one can count now around few millions of lexical units. This number is increasing rapidly.

Terminological units come to a language in different ways. The first one is the recognition of a usual word a term. This is not the best method because of reinterpretation and metonymy (“голова”, “плече”). The form, pronunciation, declination and stress of the term may be changed to differentiate such lexemes.

Borrowing is more appropriate way of term creation. Different terms are taken from different languages depending on historical situation. Music and commercial terminology usually is of Italian origin (леґато, адажіо, анданте, банк, авізо, лоро, альпарі), scenic and post terms are of French origin (антракт, партер, афіша, курєр, бандероль), sport terminology is of English origin (футбол, спорт, чемпіон, ринґ). Military and technical terms are taken from German (верстат, кронштейн, еркер, плац, бруствер, фельдфебель, штандарт).

The usage of Greek or Latin words and word combinations is another type of borrowing. Such terms were formed in different periods of language development. Church terminology for those who profess catholism is mainly taken from Latin. For the Greek Church it is mainly taken from Greek. But today terms can be formed by mixed type: one stem of Greek origin, another one of Latin ( for example, word «термінологія» consists of Latin element terminus — limit and Greek logos — science).

It should be mentioned that new terms are not simply “thought out”. Another way of term creation is borrowing from another field and in this case it may acquire a new meaning (for example, «морфологія» in linguistic and biology; «мовлення» in linguistic, physiology, medicine and psychology).

^ 3.2 Term definition
It is not easy to define the term and there were many attempts to do it. We will consider two of them.

Golovin B.N. says that the term is the word or a word combination that denotes a proffecional notion and should be used in a concrete field.

The Scietific and Terminology Committe defines a term as a word or word combination as the unity of the phonetic sigh and the notion of this sign in the system of concepts of some scientific brunch. We may assume that terminology is the unity of terms which express the notion of some sphere, that were historically formed (Kvutko, Lejchuk 1986).

In the process of terminology research linguists define:

  1. terminology study (terminology);

  2. professional lexicon of some language (ukrainian or english lexicon);

  3. professional lexicon of some field (linguistic or medicine lexicon).

The system is the unity of elements and the relations between them, and the term is its essential part and it will not exist if it is not systematic. This system consists of concrete knowladge of some field.
^ 3.3 Semantic features of a term
Terminology being a part of general lexicon has it’s own peculiarities. Some linguists recognise scientific and technical terminology. Winje G. and Marten A. emphasize that this difference is caused by circumstances of science and technic development: the technic appeared as the result of longlasting tests and mistakes that were held at random and the science was developed autonomous and on purpose. That’s why we cannot say that technic and science belong to the same thought field and can be expressed by means of the same linguistic units. For each case different notions and means are used. But we should also remembered that these spheres had been developed in parallels and supplementing one another.

Term specification :

  1. The term shuold suit the norms and rules of a language.

  2. The term should be systematic.

  3. The term should have clear definition of some notion.

  4. The term may be relatively independent from the context.

  5. The term should be accurate.

  6. The term should be short.

  7. The term should be monosemantic (this monosemantic should exist in one system of terms).

  8. Synonymy is not inherent to terminology.

  9. The term should be neutral.

  10. The term should be euphonious (dialecticisms, slang or barbarisms cannot be used for term creation).

Though, the term is not isolated or independent from general lexicon but forms a full value part of general lexicon.
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