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Linguistic and Translation Studies in Scientific Communication


Edited By Maria Lluisa Gea-Valor, Isabel García-Izquierdo and Maria José Esteve

This volume offers a collection of papers which seek to provide further insights into the way scientific and technical knowledge is communicated (i.e., written, transmitted, and translated) nowadays, not only in the academic sphere but also in society as a whole. Language in science has traditionally been valued for prioritising objective, propositional content; however, interpersonal and pragmatic dimensions as well as translation perspectives are worth exploring in order to better understand the mechanisms of specialised communication.
Accordingly, the contributions in this volume cover topics of special interest to scholars and researchers in the fields of linguistics and translation, such as the popularisation and transmission of scientific knowledge via ICTs; terminology and corpus-based studies in scientific discourse; genres and discourse in scientific and technical communication; the history and evolution of scientific language; and translation of scientific texts.


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Section I. Construction and Communication of Scientific Knowledge 13


Section I. Construction and Communication of Scientific Knowledge MARTIN HEWINGS ‘Boffins Create “Supermouse”’: The Role of the Popular Press in Creating the Public Image of Scientists and their Work 1. Introduction: the public image of science and scientists This study explores the image of scientists and their work that is projected in science journalism and, in particular, considers differences in the way this image is projected in publications aimed primarily at non-specialists. An analysis is conducted of two science news articles that appeared in the British tabloid The Sun, tracing their journalistic history back to the source academic papers. These two examples are taken from an ongoing, more extensive comparison of science articles in the British tabloid press and texts reporting the same stories in other publications. The public image of science and scientists is an area of considerable research interest, dating back to a pioneering study conducted by Mead/ Metraux in the USA in the mid 1950s (Mead/Metraux 1957). In this study, the authors found a complex image of scientists among high school students. On the one hand, informants reported an ‘official’ version of how scientists should be perceived: The scientist is seen as being essential to our national lives and to the world; he is a great, brilliant, dedicated human being, with powers far beyond those of ordinary men, whose patient researches without regard to money or fame lead to medical cures, provide for technical progress, and protect us from attack. We need him,...

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