Enough Said: The Problems of Obscurity and Cultural Reference in Learner’s Dictionary Examples

Page497-505
AuthorJohn Williams
TitleEnough Said: The Problems of Obscurity and Cultural Reference in Learner’s Dictionary Examples
AbstractNowadays, most learner's dictionaries of English rely on real-life examples taken from large corpora, in preference to the skeletal examples ofearlier publications. The use of real examples means taking sentences and phrases out of a wider context, which may raise problems of understanding. This context may be 'situational' or 'cultural'. The cultural context needs to be borne in mind by all lexicographers, whether they use real or invented examples. Facts, assumptions, and customs which the native speaker takes for granted may seem puzzling to the foreign learner. The lexicographer should seek to replace culturally opaque or misleading examples where possible. However, words and phrases based on literary allusions may be acceptable in a learner's dictionary, provided that their modern significance is explained in the entry.
SessionPART 3 - The Dictionary-making Process
Keywords
BibTex
@InProceedings{ELX96_2-014,
author = {John Williams},
title = {Enough Said: The Problems of Obscurity and Cultural Reference in Learner's Dictionary Examples},
pages = {497-505},
booktitle = {Proceedings of the 7th EURALEX International Congress},
year = {1996},
month = {aug},
date = {13-18},
address = {Göteborg, Sweden},
editor = {Martin Gellerstam, Jerker Järborg, Sven-Göran Malmgren, Kerstin Norén, Lena Rogström, Catalina Röjder Papmehl},
publisher = {Novum Grafiska AB},
isbn = {91-87850-14-1},
}
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