The Language of Tourism

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					The Language of Tourism
From theory (3.00pm-4.30pm) to practice (5.00pm-6.15p.m.)

Elena Manca Università del Salento

The Language of Tourism: a special language?
• Very similar to everyday language however • It is a very special type of communication (cf. Dann 1996)

The Language of Tourism: a special language?
• The language of tourism has successfully combined together components drawn from everyday language (cf. Sager, Dungworth & McDonald 1998) together with specifically-devised elements referring to the most specialised concepts.

The Language of Tourism: a special language?
• So it is special because: • it is a subsystem of the general language • it has its own lexical, morphosyntactic and textual rules • it is used within a specific professional domain • it is used by both experts and non-experts

The Language of Tourism: a special language?
• Calvi (2005: 43-44) identifies a range of domains that contribute to the overall content of the language of tourism: • Geography (description of places, surroundings, and monuments etc.) • Economics (tourist market, market strategies, etc.) • Sociology (definitions of pushing factors and types of tourism) • Psychology (tourists’ perception of the environment) • Other domains are history, history of art, cuisine, sport, architecture, archaeology, environment, religion, business. Each of these components constitute an aspect of tourism and creates a series of possible languages.

The Language of Tourism: a special language?
• The different components of the language of tourism are combined together and made homogeneous by the advertising function which contributes to the development of standard lexical, morphosyntactic and textual features (cf. Cogno & Dell’Ara 2001).

The language of tourism: special features
• Gotti (2006) identifies two levels of expression for the language of tourism. This language may be: 1) highly specialised discourse used by experts in the field of tourism to communicate to one another; • 2) similar to general discourse when it is adopted in interactions between specialists and non-specialists.

The language of tourism: special features
• New concepts to avoid ambiguity:

• examples are tour operator and package holidays, created to refer to companies which organize holidays, tours and travels, and to refer to all inclusive holidays with a fixed price.

The language of tourism: special features
• Objectiveness (not appliable to this language): • In tour operators’ brochures, for example, and other advertising materials the lexis used is emphatic and highly evaluative ‘usually extolling the positive features of the places described and the services offered’ (Gotti 2006: 27). Examples are: unique shopping centre, welcoming pubs, picturesque fishing harbour, luxuriant vegetation, idyllic golden beaches, breathtaking views. This type of texts often contain emphasisers and superlative forms.

The language of tourism: special features
• Transparency (with some exceptions) • an example of non-transparency in the language of tourism is provided by the use of foreign words. This technique is defined languaging (Potter 1970:90-91; Dann 1996:183-184). Foreign words of which people have scant knowledge may induce a feeling of inferiority. For this reason, their use allows the author to win the tourists’ interest.

The language of tourism: special features
• Synthetic concepts: blending • Examples of blending in the language of tourism include: campsite (camp + site), ecotourism (Ecological + tourism), motel (Motor + hotel), Travelog (travel + blog). • Synthesis in the language of tourism is achieved through acronyms and abbreviations. Examples are (Gotti 2006): APEX (Advance Purchase Excursion Fare), ETA (Estimated Time of Arrival), GMT (Greenwich Mean Time), O/W (One Way), B&B (Bed and Breakfast).

The language of tourism: special features
• Syntactic features: simplification • Examples are: Self-catering accommodation (= accommodation where you cook your own meals), Intercity sleeper (= an InterCity train in which you can sleep). • Other devices are represented by the omission of agent and auxiliaries in passive forms, as in: Pre-arranged car rental (car rental which has been previously arranged). When the agent has to be expressed it is placed before the past participle, as in An AA recommended hotel (= a hotel recommended by the Automobile Association).

The language of tourism: special features
• Syntactic features: noun in adjectival function • Tour operator, airline ticket, charter flight, travel agency, first-class fare, nature reserve.

The language of tourism: textual features
an easily understood title an indication of the geographical location directions on how to reach the place a mention of the climate a description of any scenic beauty a mention of any archaeological, historical or artistic features 7. cuisine 8. accommodation options 9. sports and entertainment facilities 10. attractive illustrations 11. shopping hints 12. special events 13. addresses for obtaining further information 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.

The language of Farmhouse Holidays in English and Italian
• The data: 1. web sites of British farmhouse holidays and Italian agriturismi 2. The websites were downloaded in a period ranging from 2000 to 2006. 3. The British corpus currently have 700,000 running words while the Italian corpus has 600,000 words.

Analysis: procedure 1
• First step: - considering all the adjectives appearing in the British corpus worldist

- identifying collocational profiles
- grouping collocates into semantic fields

Analysis: procedure 2
• Second step:

- searching for similar collocates in the Italian corpus

Analysis: procedure 3
• Third step:

- comparing and contrasting results

Discussion: procedure
• The results will be discussed with reference to:

1. Collocation and discourse patterns (Sinclair 1991) 2. Low vs. high context cultures (Hall 1989; Katan 2004)

Websites: structure
British websites Italian websites

Cottage/farm/room description Activities/facilities Attractions/Location Price and availabilities

Descrizione Attività/Servizi Il luogo/I dintorni/Il territorio Prezzi e disponibilità

Map and directions Come arrivare Booking/Enquiries/Contact Contatti us

• In terms of

1. Structure 2. Use of pictures 3. Colourful backgrounds

English adjectives: semantic fields
• Three main semantic fields:

1. Description of rooms 2. Description of surroundings 3. Description of food

Description of rooms
1. Spacious 3.Large 5.Furnished 7.Converted 9.Small 11.Decorated 13.Beamed 15.Lovely 17.Delightful 2.Equipped 4.Fitted 6.Private 8.Comfortable 10.Cosy 12.Attractive 14.Beautiful 16.Pretty 18.Charming

Description of rooms
• The adjectives mainly refers to:

1. Size 2. Equipment 3. Beauty

Descritpion of rooms
• Main collocates: 1. Kitchen (particularly with fitted and equipped) 2. Lounge (particularly with beamed) 3. Bathroom (particularly with private) 4. Bedroom 5. Room 6. Sitting-room and dining-room

Italian translation equivalents
1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. cucina sala da pranzo bagno camera stanza soggiorno salotto salone

Description of rooms (Italian corpus)
1. Arredate/a/o 3. Ampio 5. Privato 7. Accoglienti/e 9. Piccolo 11. Spaziosa 13. Personale 2. Dotate/a/o (di) 4. Grande 6. Confortevoli/e 8. Abitabile 10.Completa/i (di) 12.Fornita 14. Luminosa

No beauty adjectives:hypotheses
1. Two different language systems?
2. Are they used to describe the whole structure and not the single room?

Description of farm buildings
1. Agrituristica/o 3. Antica/o/e 5. Tipica/o/e 7. Rurale/i 9. Ristrutturato/a/i 11. Aziendali 13. Padronale 15. Comunale 17. Forniti 19. Composti 21. Originaria/o 2. Agricola 4. Biologica 6. Indipendente 8. Principale 10. D’epoca 12. Vecchi/e 14. Coloniche 16. Arredata 18. Ricavati 20. Deliziosi

Extending the linguistic co-text: arredati (98 out of 186)

Extending the linguistic co-text: furnished (5 out of 122)

Ancient and period in the English corpus
• 1. 2. • 1. 2. 3. • 1. 2. Ancient: Entries: 89 Main collocates: woodland, village, town, church an castle Antique: Entries: 52 Main collocates: Furniture (20 instances), shops, centre Period: Entries: 71 It refers to furnishings in only 10 instances

Antico in the Italian corpus
• Very frequent: 544 times • It collocates with: • casale, casolare, borgo, castello, feudo, città, masseria, strada, torre, tradizione,tradizioni, casa,ricette, mobili, sapori, …

Extending the linguistic co-text: dotata di

Extending the linguistic co-text: fitted and equipped

Description of surroundings
• Main collocates in English: views, garden, countryside, towns, cities, villages, valley, lane, road, drive

• Main collocates in Italian: città, feudo, borgo, giardino, parco, boschi, spazio, uliveti, vigneti, panorama, paesaggio, vista, campagna, natura, verde, colline, valle, pace, quiete

Metaphor of the immersion

Description of food
• Main collocates in English: food and types of food, restaurants, pubs • Main collocates in Italian: piatti, prodotti, types of food, sapori, metodi, ricette

Ancient tastes – Antichi sapori

• Do British and Italian owners use the same form of description and promotion to attract tourists’ interest?

• How strong is the influence of culture on the language used by farm owners to present and describe the holiday they offer?

Low and High Context Cultures
(Katan: 2004)

Conclusion: British culture
• • • • more content-oriented detailed and explicit descriptions the style is plain focus on the now rather than on the past

Conclusion: Italian culture
• more form-oriented • what counts more is what remain unsaid • explicitness and details do not leave much room to imagination • main aim: creating a fairy aura and a dream atmosphere • focus not on the now but on the past

From Lexis to Collocation …

…to understand how adjectives are used …

From Collocation to Culture

• …to understand why adjectives are or are not used

Translations on the web

• Examples of mistranslations and methods to avoid making English people laugh

Section devoted to map and directions
How to reach us How to arrive How to find us • Come arrivare/ • Come raggiungerci How to find us Map and directions (from corpus data)

The position
• Posizione: very frequent in the Italian corpus • Position in the English corpus
The property is set in a commanding position on the wn is that the hill, which stands in a commanding position where all The elevated position of Ardness windows open onto slate patios in unique elevated position overlooking Cotherstone, in a beautiful, rural, south facing position. uildings and are set in an elevated south facing position on our farm. bed and breakfast accommodation set in an idyllic position in the midst of green The house is in an idyllic position, just off the Situated in a rural position on the farm We are in a secluded rural position Set in a beautiful and secluded position This cottage also benefits from a sunny position The picnic table outside which is also in a sunny position

The position
• Position in the English translations • central, convenient, excellent, geographical, happy, panoramic, peaceful, privileged, strategic

which translate the Italian
• posizione centrale, comoda posizione, posizione eccellente, posizione geografica, posizione felice, posizione panoramica, posizione privilegiata, posizione strategica.

• But the English corpus suggests the following translation equivalents: • posizione centrale: central location or centrally located • comoda posizione, posizione strategica posizione felice: the house is convenient to/for or ideally situated/located/placed for or ideal base for; • posizione panoramica: it has beautiful panoramic views or with panoramic views • posizione eccellente: excellent location

Agriturismi Corpus
posizione centrale comoda posizione posizione strategica posizione felice posizione panoramica posizione geografica posizione eccellente

Agriparallel Corpus
central position convenient position strategic position happy position panoramic position geographic position excellent position

Farmhouse Corpus
central location centrally located convenient to/for Ideally situated/ located/placed ideal base for with panoramic views to have panoramic views set/situated/located/place d excellent location

Panorama and Paesaggio
Agriturismi Corpus (godere di) un panorama meraviglioso Agriparallel Corpus (enjoy) wonderful views wonderful landscape untouched landscape (translation not found) (translation not found) Farmhouse Corpus (enjoy) wonderful views wonderful scenery unspoilt area/countryside farming landscape rolling landscape landscape of rugged hills views over the surrounding hills

paesaggio incontaminato paesaggio agricolo paesaggio collinare

Expressing distance
Agriturismi Corpus Agriparallel Corpus Farmhouse Corpus within easy reach within easy driving/travelling/ walking distance x miles/km away/from a breve/poca distanza at a short distance da (from) within easy distance within easy reach a x km di distanza/da x km from/away x km distance from x km far

facilmente raggiungibile in auto/con l’automobile facilmente raggiungibile a piedi

can be reached by car within easy driving distance can be reached on foot within easy walking distance

Cottages and rooms
Agriturismi corpus Agriparallel corpus Farmhouse corpus sympathetically restored/renovated restaurato accuratamente/ accurately / faithfully fedelmente/ rispettando lo restored stile originale

restaurato con cura e con la massima attenzione completamente/totalment e restaurato

masterfully/meticulously/ skilfully restored completely restored/ refurbished/restructured

skilfully / carefully restored extensively restored completely refurbished

da poco restaurato di recente restaurato recentemente restaurato

recently/newly restored/ refurbished/renovated/ restructured

recently/newly restored recently refurbished recently renovated

Cottages and rooms
finemente/elegantement e ristrutturato accurately/lovingly restored beautifully/lovingly restored beautifully refurbished/ refurbished to a high standard / beautifully renovated

ristrutturato con gusto

tastefully restructured

tastefully renovated/refurbished/ restored

• languages should always been approached and studied phraseologically: as showed here, collocations and prefabricated sentences are at the basis of language and account for how language works

• a translator should be familiar with the language of tourism both of the source and the target language and, at the same time, s/he should be also familiar with both cultures in order to understand what may be effective and what needs to be changed in the transfer of information from a language into another language.

• Corpora are a valid tool for translators: starting from data means starting from actual evidence and reducing the risk of producing unusual collocations and culture-bound mistakes. • A systematic corpus analysis of promotional material may help those who mediate across cultures to focus not only on register restrictions on language but also on those aspects that are relevant for the particular culture we want to address.

And now a 30-minute break
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