Studia Translatorica

ISSN: 2084-3321 • e-ISSN: 2657-4802 • DOI: 10.23817/strans

Syntactic complexity as a stylistic feature of subtitles

Andy Stauder, Leopold-Franzens-Universität Innsbruck (ORCID: 0000–0002–2253–0614)
Michael Ustaszewski, Leopold-Franzens-Universität Innsbruck (ORCID: 0000–0002–2000–5920)

DOI: 10.23817/strans.11-13 (online zugänglich: 2020-11-01)
Datum der Einreichung: 2020-03-23

Datum der Annahme zum Druck: 2020-07-27

Schlüsselwörter: translation style, stylometry, subtitles, syntactic complexity, corpus approaches

In audiovisual translation, stylometry can be used to measure formal-aesthetic fidelity. We present a corpus-based measure of syntactic complexity as a feature of language style. The methodology considers hierarchical dimensions of syntactic complexity, using syllable counting and dependency parsing. The test material are dialogues of several characters from the TV show “Two and a Half Men”. The results show that characters do not differ syntactically among themselves as much as might be expected, and that, despite a general tendency to level differences even more in translation, the changes in syntactic complexity between the original and translation depend mostly on the respective character-feature combination.


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