A corpus-based examination of the translation of the suffix –ism into chinese

Lily Lim

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


The suffix –ism is one of the most productive suffixes in English, which presents complexities and challenges in English-to-Chinese translation. This study examines corpus tools and resources that translators can have access to, aiming at revealing the potential values of corpus resources that translators can draw on to better deal with the suffix in their practice. Our investigation is focused on interrogating a parallel corpus named “Education”, which contains 450,000 pairs of English and Chinese sentences. Compared with traditional tools such as monolingual and English-Chinese (reverse) dictionaries, the parallel corpus exhibits remarkable values. It is easy to access at Sketch Engine, enabling systematic queries on decent coverage of –ism words. The English-Chinese concordance lines present a wealth of resources with which translators can tease out the senses conveyed by the –ism words, retrieve rich translation candidates in meaningful contexts that previous translators have worked with. The technical skills required appeared to be very attainable to translators with average IT competence. The merits of corpus resources are discussed in the context of translator training.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNew Frontiers in Translation Studies
PublisherSpringer Science and Business Media Deutschland GmbH
Number of pages27
Publication statusPublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes

Publication series

NameNew Frontiers in Translation Studies
ISSN (Print)2197-8689
ISSN (Electronic)2197-8697


  • Lexicology
  • Parallel corpus
  • Suffix –ism
  • Translation equivalent


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