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Blog criado por Bruno Coriolano de Almeida Costa, professor de Língua Inglesa desde 2002. Esse espaço surgiu em 2007 com o objetivo de unir alguns estudiosos e professores desse idioma. Abordamos, de forma rápida e simples, vários aspectos da Língua Inglesa e suas culturas. Agradeço a sua visita.

"Se tivesse perguntado ao cliente o que ele queria, ele teria dito: 'Um cavalo mais rápido!"

segunda-feira, 24 de fevereiro de 2014

Bolsistas no exterior não falam inglês porque ninguém fala inglês

Está todo mundo comentando sobre a falta de inglês dos bolsistas do Ciência sem Fronteiras, programa federal que tem o objetivo de enviar 101.000 estudantes brasileiros ao exterior até o próximo ano.

De acordo com uma matéria da Folha que saiu neste domingo, há um número considerável de bolsistas que corre o risco de ter de voltar ao Brasil sem ter feito o curso pretendido porque não conseguiu proficiência na língua.

Isso acontece principalmente com os bolsistas que estavam em Portugal e Espanha e foram realocados para países como Estados Unidos, Canadá e Austrália. Eles correspondem a 15% do total de bolsistas.

Portugal, que nem tem universidades boas como as nossas, era o preferido dos bolsistas. Foi excluído da lista de países que receberiam estudantes no programa de internacionalização.

Dos bolsistas realocados que estão nos EUA, o pais que mais recebe estudantes, 43% correm risco de não conseguir aceite acadêmico por falta de inglês. Preocupante.

Por que os bolsistas não falam inglês?

Simples: porque no Brasil não há inglês no ensino universitário.
Não temos aulas em inglês, não lemos em inglês, não escrevemos artigos acadêmicos em inglês.

Por essas e por outras, nossas universidades são tão pouco internacionalizadas.
Em números otimistas, 0,5% dos nossos estudantes vieram de outros países (e não necessariamente de países de língua inglesa).

A ideia do Ciência sem Fronteiras é boa. É preciso internacionalizar o ensino superior, fazer intercâmbio, trocar conhecimento.

Mas, antes da política, nossos estudantes precisariam ter pelo menos um mínimo contato com a língua.

Leia no original aqui

quinta-feira, 20 de fevereiro de 2014

What are some classic papers in linguistics that a beginner should read?

Someone has asked this question on Quora and a lad named Marc Ettlinger, PhD, Linguistics, UC Berkeley provided us with this great answer:

Linguistics sits somewhere between sciences like neuroscience, computer science and psychology and humanities, including modern languages and philology.

 I'll highlight a few classic books and articles with the idea that there are many that I'm leaving out. Note that there is a bias here towards older papers that have shown their reliability over time, whereas the most relevant papers to someone doing research now will be generally newer, but less reliable.

Broca (1865) On the site of the faculty of articulated speech. - Pioneering study of neurolinguistics, identifying Broca's area

Paul Broca

·    Saussure (1916). A Course in General Linguistics - Introduced a number of ideas fundamental to the study of modern linguistics including the arbitrariness of the sign and the importance of studying linguistics synchronically

·         Sapir (1921) Language: An Introduction to the Study of Speech

Edward Sapir

 ·  Jakobson (1941)Child Language: Aphasia and Linguistic Universals - Jakboson was a giant of structuralism, but this volume is the one that's really lasted the test of time.

·   Wittgenstein (1953). Philosophical Investigations. The seminal work on the philosophy of language, introducing Language-games and key work onCategory theory
·         Whorf (1956) Language, Thought, and Reality - The Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis
·       Berko (1958) The Child's Learning of English Morphology. - Introduced thewug-test and popularized the idea of studying child language as a way of unlocking the secrets of language

·         Chomsky. (1959) A Review of B. F. Skinner's Verbal Behavior - The critique of behaviorism that launched the cognitive revolution.
·       Labov, W. (1964) The Social Stratification of English in New York City - Launched modern sociolinguistics
·               Chomsky (1965) Aspects of the Theory of Syntax - Culmination of 5-10 years of revolutionizing the study of linguistics as a cognitive science
·    Greenberg. (1966) Language Universals - Revealed striking patterns of regularity across languages
·             Lenneberg (1967)Biological Foundations of Language. Introduced the idea of a critical period
·         Chomsky & Halle (1968) The Sound Pattern of English - Treatise on generative phonology

Chomsky & Halle

·         Geschwind (1970). The Organization of Language and the Brain - Key state-of-the-art on language and the brain
·         Eimas et al., (1971)Speech perception in infants. Pioneering research on child language.
·         Brown (1973). A first language: The early stages. One of the first careful documentations of a child learning language.
·         Ladefoged (1975) A course in phonetics - The textbook on phonetics, to this day
·         Grice (1975) ‘Logic and Conversation’ - Foundational work on pragmatics and diyadic conversation.
·         Lakoff & Johnson (1980) Metaphors We Live By - One of the touchstones in the emerging Cognitive Linguistics

·         Fodor (1983) The Modularity of Mind - The clearest argument for encapsulation and modularity of the language faculty
·         Werker & Tees (1984) Cross Language Speech Perception - Helped establish the processes involved in the earliest stages of language understanding.
·         Prince & Smolensky (1993) Optimality Theory - Transformed phonology and persists as the dominant paradigm
·         Nunberg, Sag & Wasow (1994) Idioms - A really nice example of a clear, interesting paper that I keep returning to over and over - more of a sentimental favorite on my part, plus Nunberg. Yes, that Geoff Nunberg, before he was famous.
·         Chomsky (1995) The Minimalist Program - The current paradigm for studying syntax
·         Saffran, Aslin & Newport (1996) Statistical Learning by 8-month-old Infants - Re-introduced the idea that language acquisition may depend on domain-general mechanisms
·         Luce & Pisoni (1999). Recognizing Spoken Words: The Neighborhood Activation Model. One of the most cited papers in psycholinguistics and speech recognition.
·         Kuhl (2000) A new view of language acquisition
·         Jurafsky & Martin (2000). Touchstone for computational linguistics.
·         Hauser, Chomsky & Fitch (2002) The Faculty of Language: What is it, Who Has It and How Did It Evolve - Pushed all the generative linguistics chips onto the notion of recursions. And the response: Pinker & Jackendoff (2004) The faculty of language: what's special about it?

Well, this is not all, but I think that whoever is going to read this post, will be busy for a while. Therefore, enjoy it.

terça-feira, 18 de fevereiro de 2014

Brazil and US – Alike or Different?

By B. Michael Rubin

Like most animals on the Earth, human beings are social animals. Animals and people not only prefer to live in groups, but they rarely survive on their own. Think, for example, of bees or ants who live in groups of hundreds or thousands. They all work in unison toward a common goal.
While there are some people who prefer life alone, known in English as “hermits”, they are the exceptions. Long ago, there were examples of respected hermits, spiritual men who left society to live in caves in ancient Greece and Rome. There were Christian hermits who fled Italy in the 5th century after the fall of the Roman Empire to live in caves in the Cappadochia region of central Turkey. A modern-day American hermit, Ted Kaczynski, known as the Unabomber, was arrested for the crime of sending bombs in the mail.

Today, not only are hermits rare, but the trend is for people to move away from less populated, rural areas to live in or near big cities. This trend started in the 1700s in countries like the US and England at the time of the Industrial Revolution and continues today all over the world.
As developing countries like Brazil grow more wealthy, they often follow the trends of developed countries like the US. In Brazil, the movement of people away from the interior and closer to the Atlantic Ocean is happening quickly. This change, known as urbanization, alters the daily lives and the social structure of a culture. Today, 87 percent of Brazilians live in or around urban areas.
With the world’s population becoming centered around cities, an interesting contradiction arises. While cities force people to live physically closer to each other, they have the opposite effect on people emotionally. Living in cities is more anonymous, less friendly, and more stressful than living in a rural area. In a small town, people know all their neighbors, but not in a big city.

In a Brazilian or American small town with a population of 10,000 people, everyone knows everyone else. Most of the people have lived in the town all their lives, and many of them have intermarried and are related to each other. On the other hand, in a big city like Curitiba, the population has grown 300 percent in only thirty years. Today, as many as half the residents of Curitiba were not born here.
Relationships with neighbors are not the only differences that arise when people move to cities. Crime is higher in more populated areas, so there is less trust. In small towns in the US and Brazil, people don’t lock their cars or their homes because they know and trust their neighbors; there are no strangers. Here’s an example: My sister lives in a small town in the north of the US near the border of Canada. There, it’s extremely cold in the winter, so it’s common for people to leave the engine turned on in their cars in the street while they go into a store to buy something. Because of the extreme cold weather, people need to keep the oil circulating in the car engines. With the keys in the car to keep it running, the car isn’t locked, and someone could steal it. However, this is not a problem because there is very little crime in small towns.
Along with cities being more dangerous and less friendly, the displacement of people from small towns to big cities forces a complete change of lifestyle. Everyday existence is altered. In the first stage of urbanization, men leave to work outside the home while the women care for the children. Later in the urbanization process, women also leave for work. Today in Brazil for the first time, a majority of women are working outside the home. In the US in 2013, for the first time, the majority of people in the workforce were women.
With urbanization, and women working and being educated, one consequence is family size decreases. When women are working, they have less time to raise large families. Most couples in Brazil today are choosing to have only one or two children, and thus the average family size in Brazil is the same as it is in developed countries like the US and Japan.
Another consequence of urbanization, of living in a less safe and less friendly environment, is a shift toward greater privacy and individualism. Living in the more anonymous environment of a big city, people become less community oriented and more focused on themselves. Because humans are social beings, with greater individualism and less sense of community people feel more isolated or lonely. Instead of knowing everyone in the town, a city resident may not even know the name of her closest neighbor.
In the US today, more than 30 million people live alone. In the largest city in the US, New York, almost 800 languages are spoken. Sadly, this everyday living environment encourages loneliness and isolation, which are major causes of depression, anxiety, and mental instability. At least 20 percent of Americans use medications prescribed by doctors to treat anxiety and depression. While Brazilians are known for envying life in the US, in the race for mental health and a stable, well-adjusted society, Brazil is winning.
Often in richer countries, cultural trends unfold that later arrive in developing countries, like Brazil. For example, the move from small towns to big cities, along with the reduction in average family size, occurred first in the US and is now happening in Brazil. The rapid increase of girls going to universities and starting careers before they have children happened first in the US and is occurring now in Brazil. Similarly, the growth in Brazil’s economy, stimulating greater wealth and a larger middle class, has allowed Brazilians to buy bigger homes and bigger cars like Americans. Like the US, owning a computer is common in Brazil, as are cable TV and having home Internet access.
However, Brazil is still a very different country from the US. It is important to remember this when making comparisons between the US and Brazil — no two countries are exactly alike.
Cultural trends that illustrate changes in a society, like the spread of the Internet, always continue to change and influence people’s lives. In the US, on a positive note, media researchers believe that the isolation and loneliness suffered by Americans is improving. Americans are finding it easier to maintain connections to family and friends thanks to cellphones with texting and Facebook and Skype. In 1986, about half of US parents said that they had spoken with one of their adult children in the past week. In 2008, that number had climbed to 87 percent.
Brazilians now have access to computers, and cellphones with texting, and smartphones with Internet access. Brazil ranks second in the world to the United States in Facebook users and Twitter accounts. Therefore, while Brazilians grow richer and move to big cities like Americans, hopefully they will use the Internet to stay connected with their families and friends and avoid the mental health problems that affect Americans.

Michael Rubin is an American living in Curitiba.

Algumas provas de concursos para tradutores e interpretes comerciais.

Para as minhas próximas aulas da disciplina de Tradução I (disciplina optativa de carga-horária de 30 horas) na Universidade, decidi levar algumas questões de concursos para tradutores e interpretes para que os alunos possam tentar respondê-las e analisá-las.

Embora na maioria das vezes as provas consistam de uma prova escrita e uma prova oral, caso de provas para tradutor juramentado, como citou Fábio M. Said, na revista TRADUÇÃO & LINGUAGEM (edição especial da Revista Portuguesa), elas parecem variar muito de instituição para instituição. Geralmente tais provas sempre apresentam o mesmo padrão: fazer traduções do português para o idioma estrangeiro (chamada de “versão”) e outra do idioma estrangeiro para o português.

Aproveito a ocasião para falar algumas curiosidades sobre os tradutores, mais especificamente sobre os mitos mais comuns sobre a tradução juramentada.  

·         Tradutor público é não é, ao contrário do que muita gente pensa, funcionário público;
·         Tradutor público não tem clientela garantida;
·         Tradutor público não traduz apenas documentos jurídicos;
·         E nem todo tradutor público é formado em Direito. Para falar a verdade, nem existe uma regulamentação sobre a profissão;
·         Tradutor público não é nomeado pelo consulado do país estrangeiro; ele faz concurso público para, digamos, receber a denominação de Tradutor Público e Intérprete Comercial (TPIC).  

Essa foi questão de concurso para tradutor-interprete da Universidade Federal de Santa Maria, em 2012.

A seguir, marque a alternativa que contém a versão correta.

“A professora Kate James é inglesa e obteve sua graduação em francês e russo na Faculdade de Estudos Europeus em Londres. Desde então ela vive na França onde ela ensina Inglês como Língua Estrangeira e Tradução”.
(James, K. Translation Journal. 2002).

a.           Ms. Kate James is English and has obtained her degree in French and Russian at the School of European Studies in London. Since then, she lives in France where she teaches English as a Foreign Language and Translation.
b.           The teacher Kate James is English and has obtained his graduation in French and Russian in the Faculty of European Studies in London. Since then, she lives in France where she teaches English as a foreign language and translation.
c.            Professor Kate James is English and obtains his graduation in French and Russian at the School of European Studies. Now lives in France where she teaches English as a Foreign Language and Translation.
d.           Kate James is a Russian teacher who teaches English as a Foreign Language and Translation at the School of European Studies in London.
e.            Ms. Kate James is an English high school teacher in Russia where she teaches French and Translation.

Questão da prova de tradutor-interprete/inglês da UFRPE de 2012

Which of the following alternative translations of the text below is the correct one?

Texto T3

Se Dante acrescentasse mais um círculo aos nove que colocou no inferno de sua Divina Comédia, ele seria reservado às
estatísticas oficiais.
(J.R. Guzzo. Revista Veja, 11 de abril de 2012.)

A) If Dante added one more circle to the nine he presented in the hell of his Divine Comedy, it would be reserved for official statistics.
B) If Dante could add one more circle to the nine ones he put in the hell of his Divine Comedy, it would be reserved to official statistics.
C) If Dante adds one more circle to the nine he presented in the hell of his Divine Comedy, it will be reserved for official statistics.
D) If Dante had added another circle to the nine he presented in the hell of his Divine Comedy, it would have been reserved to the official statistics.
E) If Dante could have added another circle to the nine he put in hell of his Divine Comedy, it would have been reserved for official statistics.

Vou deixar os leitores do blog tentando encontrar a resposta correta para cada uma delas.

Já no concurso para TRADUTOR-INTERPRETE DA JUNTA COMERCIAL DO RIO DE JANEIRO, uma das questões para fazer era a versão do texto que segue abaixo, (além de uma tradução de um texto em inglês para o português):



De repente, escolhemos a vida de alguém. Era essa que a gente queria. Naquela casa grande e branca, na rua quieta, na cidade pequena. Sim, estamos trocando tudo. Era ela que a gente queria ser, aquela serenidade atrás dos olhos claros, aquela bondade que se estende aos bichos e às coisas, tão simplesmente. E aquela mansa alegria de viver, aquele risonho voto de confiança na vida, aquela promissória em branco contra o futuro, descontada cada dia, miudamente, a plantar flores, a brunir a casa, a aconchegar os bichos.

Era naquele porto que a gente gostaria de colher as velas, trocar a ansiedade, a inquietação, a angústia latente e sem remédio, o medo múltiplo e cósmico, todas as interrogações, por aquela paz. Acordar de manhã, depois de dormir de noite, achando que vale a pena, que paga, que compensa botar dois pés entusiasmados no chão. Abrir as bandeiras das venezianas para que o sol entre, com o gesto de quem abre o coração. Qual é o hormônio, e destilado por que glândula, que dá a uma mulher o gosto de engomar, tão alvamente, a sua toalha bordada para a bandeja do café? Há uma batalha bem ganha, cotidianamente renovada, contra o pó e a traça e a ferrugem, que tudo consomem. Dentro dos muros da sua cidadela, as flores viçam, a poeira foge, nada vence o alvo imaculado das cortinas, os cães vadios acham lar e dono. E é esse um modo singelo mais difícil de ter fé. Cada bibelô tem uma história, diante de cada retrato há um vaso de flor, para cada bicho há um gesto de carinho.

“Mulher virtuosa, quem a achará? Porque o seu valor excede ao de muitos rubis” —cansei eu de ouvir, na escola dominical, e olho em torno a indagar quantos e que orientais rubis pagarão aquele miúdo, enternecido carinho, que pôs flores nos vasos e cera no chão e transparência nos vidros e ouro líquido no chá. Oh, a perdida paz fazendeira deste chá no meio da tarde, que as mulheres do meu tempo já não sabem o que seja, misturado a este morno cheiro de bolo e torradas que vem da cozinha! Somos uma geração que come de pé, que trocou os doces ritos que cercavam o nobre ato de alimentar-se, por uma apressada ingestão de calorias.

Já não comemos, abastecemo-nos como um veículo, como um automóvel encostado à sua bomba. Trocamos as velhas salas de jantar por mesas de abas, que se improvisam, às pressas, de um consolo exíguo encostado a uma parede. E o que sabe de um lar uma criança que não foi chamada, na doçura da tarde, do fundo de um quintal, para interromper as correrias, lavar mal-e-mal as mãos e vir sentar-se à mesa posta para o lanche, com mansas senhoras gordas que vieram visitar a mamãe? É a hora dos quitutes, das ingênuas vaidades doceiras, da exibição das velhas receitas, copiadas em letra bonita...

(LESSA, Elsie. Gente IN: SANTOS, Joaquim Ferreira dos (org.)
As cem melhores crônicas brasileiras. Rio de Janeiro: Objetiva, 2007, p. 157-158.)

Gostaria de deixar claro que essa postagem resume demais as informações sobre TRADUTORES E INTÉRPRETES e, portanto, não deve ser utilizada como referência no assunto. Trata-se de um blog que apenas aborda o assunto de forma bem superficial e, nesse caso, estamos postando partes de algumas provas de tal área.

Obrigado pela leitura. Curta nosso blog e/ou deixa uma sugestão ou alguma mensagem ou sinal de fumaça... boa tarde!