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词典编纂者如何看待语言? – 译学馆
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词典编纂者如何看待语言?

How Lexicographers Think About Language | Kory Stamper

接触语言有两种方式
So these are two main approaches to language.
规范主义和描述主义
There’s prescriptivism and descriptivism.
规范主义是相信英语的“最佳用法”会留下来
Prescriptivism is a believe that the “best practices” of English will prevail.
因此你支持英语的最佳用法
And so you champion the best practices of English.
英语最佳用法的思想是 他们大概是粗粗看了下
And the idea of the best practices of English, they sort of take a very broad look at the
已有的文献标准 并且使用这些标准
established canon of literature and use that.
描述主义是另一种接触语言的方式 并且是字典所使用的方式
Descriptivism is another approach to language and it’s one that dictionaries use.
这种方式中你是语言的记录者
And that is that you are a chronicler of language.
你按语言的使用方式和你期望的使用方式来记录它
You record the language as it’s used and not as you want it to be used.
因此 比如说 编辑一般是规范主义者 因为他们试着建立一套标准
So editors are prescriptivists, for instance, because they’re trying to establish a standard
的写作方法、一种标准的语调或一种标准的表达用于出版
way of writing or a standard tone or a standard voice for a publication.
字典就是描述主义者 因为字典的目的是尽可能
Dictionaries are a descriptivist because the goal of a dictionary is to record as much
多的记录语言 即使规范主义者、作家和编辑支持
of the language as you can, and even though prescriptivists and writers and editors champion
英语的最佳用法 这些最佳用法并不是出版出来
the best practices of English, the best practices of English aren’t all the things that end
的全部
up in print.
因此 作为描述主义者 我们几乎会看过所有能印出来的东西—好的、坏的、
So as descriptivists we sort of look at everything that makes it into print—so good, bad and
丑的—只要它们符合标准 就都收录进字典
ugly—and enter those into the dictionary when they meet the criteria.
在我到《韦氏词典》之前 我并不被认为是描述主义者
I didn’t identify as a descriptivist before I got to Merriam Webster.
我以前是个规范主义者 因为在你成长过程中—大概是美国教育体系的
I was a prescriptivist, because when you grow up—sort of the way that our American educational
运作方式—你在这些语法规则中成长
system works—you grow up inside of this set of grammar rules.
而那些语法规则是规范性的
And those grammar rules are prescriptive.
因此当我开始工作时 他们说的第一件事就是 “你要
So when I started my job one of the first things that they said is: “You have to be
愿意放弃一切语言学中的偏见 你要记录语言”
willing to let go of any linguistic prejudices you have to record the language.”
因此 我从一个规范主义者转变成一个描述主义者
So I moved from being a prescriptivist into being a descriptivist.
并且我仍然有—我仍有些时候是个规范主义者
And I still have – there are still times when I’m a prescriptivist, and there’s
有时我在看到一个单词时候仍然会说“嗯 我不喜欢它”
still times when I see a word and say, “Ugh, I don’t like it.”
但 就是这样 我开始这项工作之前并不是一个描述主义者
But yes, I wasn’t a descriptivist before I started this job.
我认为默认以一种描述主义者的观念对待语言是很有价值的 因为
I think there is value in defaulting to a descriptivist view of language, because what
描述主义者对待语言的观点假设你的谈话对象
a descriptivist’s view of language assumes is that the person you’re speaking with
和你对语言有同等的掌控程度 并且他们的英语
has an equal command of the language that you do, and that their English is just as
和你水平一致
good as your English.
特别是在商业场合 你的交流对象是你的雇员、供应商
And particularly in a business setting when you’re dealing with employees or your vendors
或是客户 他们来自各种地方 这是任何交流的基础—
or customers from all over the place that has to be the basis for any kind of communication—that
你们地位平等
you’re both on equal footing.
并且我认为当你和不同的人交流时 你有机会对你组织中的同事
So, and I think when you do that you also get a chance to learn more about people in
有更深的认识
your organization.
因此 如果我的一个下属说了“你们大伙” 我就能问了 “你是在南部
So if I have an employee that says “y’all,” I can ask, you know, “Oh, did you grow up
长大的吗?”
in the South?”
通过这种方式 我就可以对我的同事了解更深
And I get to find out more about the people in my organization that way.
然而 如果你仅仅是说 “你们大伙 在商业场景中是不合适的”
Whereas if you just say, “‘Y’all’s’ not appropriate in a business setting,”
这会马上让他们一句话也不想说了 并且这会使他们的语言受到道德约束
that immediately shuts someone out and it puts a moral charge on their own language
这并不是你想见到的
that you don’t necessarily want.
这无法促进交流 甚至无法培养尊重
It doesn’t foster communication—or respect, even.
当你决定像“不管”这样的词 或“核能”这样的发音是错的
When you decide that words like “irregardless” or the pronunciation “nuculer” are wrong
你就将一大群自然而然使用这些词语的人排除在外了
you are excluding a whole group of people who use those words naturally.
他们也许就不会再打“不管” 他们也许就会在说“核能”的时候
And they might not print “irregardless” and they might be very careful when they say
非常小心 以保证他们说对了
“nuclear” to make sure they’re saying nuclear.
但这些词其实有—“不管”这个词就有很长的历史
But those words actually have – irregardless has a really long history.
这个词有超过200岁了 它出现在世界上所有英语国家
It’s over 200 years old, and it has appeared in print all over the English-speaking world.
“核能”这个不标准发音实际上—即使我们认为 我们说这是
And the pronunciation “nuculer” is actually—though we think that it’s sort of, we say it’s
无知的发音 其实很多受过最高教育的人在公共场合
an uneducated pronunciation, it’s actually used by some of the most highly educated people
使用这种发音
in the public domain.
因此 核物理学家就会说不标准的“核能” 并且“不管”曾用于
So nuclear physicists will say “nuculer,” and “irregardless” has been used in oral
最高法院的口头辩论
arguments on the Supreme Court.
因此 当你说“不管是不合适的”或者“这跟文盲一样” 或者你说“核能
So when you say “irregardless isn’t appropriate” or “it’s illiterate” or you say “nuculer
这个词不应该这么说” 这其实是让人们放弃他们的经历
isn’t how you say that word,” it’s just a way of pushing out people’s experiences
或者放弃其它代表他们身份的东西 因为这就是
and pushing out sort of other-ing people’s identity really, because these are parts of
他们这个人的一部分
who they are.
你可以说“不管在正式文书里是不合适的” 这是真的
And you can say, “irregardless isn’t appropriate in formal writing,” which is true.
你可以说大部分人说的是正确的“核能” 这也是真的
And you can say most people say “nuclear,” which is also true.
但 说“不管是不对的 核能的发音不对” 就真的是把道德带到了
But to say “irregardless is wrong, nuculer is wrong” really brings morality into an
一个它无法起作用的领域了
area where morality doesn’t have any place.

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视频概述

语言有规范主义和描述主义两种 字典就是描述主义的典型 对语言不带任何偏见地记录他们

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视频来源

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ZlcG8JZeDM

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