ERIC Number: EJ938047
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 0
Writer Construction in English and German Popularized Academic Discourse: The Uses of "We" and "Wir"
Multilingua: Journal of Cross-Cultural and Interlanguage Communication, v27 n4 p409-438 Dec 2008
The present article investigates writer-reader interaction through the construction of writer and reader personae in English and German popular scientific writing by means of first person plural pronouns in subject position. Popular scientific writing only became firmly established as a German-language genre in the last quarter of the 20th century when the high-profile publication "Scientific American" entered the German news magazine market with a German-language sister issue, featuring German translations of articles from the English magazine and original text production in German. We assume that language contact in the process of translation from English to German influenced both the German translations and original text production in German and helped to shape genre-specific communicative styles in the then emerging genre of popular scientific writing in German. Writer-reader interaction is considered as one aspect of communicative style. Focusing on the contribution of first person plural pronouns to the realization of writer-reader interaction through specific writer and reader personae, it will be shown that, over time, patterns of use surface in both the translated and non-translated German texts that can--at least in part--be traced back to the English communicative style in popular scientific writing.
Descriptors: Academic Discourse, Linguistic Borrowing, Translation, Scientific Research, Form Classes (Languages), Periodicals, German, Language Styles, English, Reader Text Relationship, Language Usage
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A