Volume 60, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0521-9744
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9668
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This paper presents a corpus-based study about differences in micro-function combination patterns in German and Spanish warranties for household appliances. Firstly the micro-functional text analysis approach is described. This methodology makes feasible an empirically motivated stylistic description of specialised texts. The first large-scale micro-functional text-type analysis was carried out in the stylistic description of German and Spanish employment contracts. The second part of the paper analyses the micro-functional composition of German and Spanish warranties and some text specific combination patterns as well as their language specific differences. It will be shown that in contrast to German warranties, in Spanish warranties obligations tend to be expressed as dependent clauses which are subordinate to independent clauses that reaffirm the validity of the warranty. Moreover it becomes clear that most of these obligations are formulated in an indirect way. Finally possible reasons for the findings are explained by means of the politeness theory and language typology with the results claiming that Spanish texts are more prone to avoid face-threatening acts than German ones and that they are also more explicit in expression. The paper ends with the implications these findings hold for the linguistic adequacy of translations.


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