Passive voice in the Italian translations of English simplified texts: A case study of layperson summaries of clinical trials
The present paper aims at analyzing verb voice in a comprehensibility-enhanced text type (ascribable to the Plain Language variety), i.e., the layperson summary of clinical trials. More specifically, the Italian target texts of these documents (originally written in English) were considered and compared to their source texts. Canonical passives as well as less prototypical ones (including passive-related constructions) were examined. The passive voice is particularly significant in language simplification (notably in simplified versions of specialized texts) as it is known to be cognitively harder to process than the active voice; at the same time, though, it is a distinctive feature of Languages for Specific Purposes (LSPs) – one of those linguistic traits that Halliday (1990: 57-58) refers to when he talks about “a typical syndrome of grammatical features” in specialized discourse. For these reasons, it is interesting to delve into this aspect. The main result was that the number of canonical passives increases in the Italian texts, going against the universal of simplification in translation.
EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste
Giulia Pedrini, "Passive voice in the Italian translations of English simplified texts: A case study of layperson summaries of clinical trials" in: "Rivista internazionale di tecnica della traduzione n.24 - 2022", EUT Edizioni Università di Trieste, Trieste, 2022, pp. 151-173