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Commercial Translation Workshop Spanish/English
Nelson Castillo M.

Advanced Writing

Chapter 12 The Written Description

12.1 The Description

Written description is to represent people, animals, objects, places, sensations, feelings, processes, etc.., explaining, through the written language and other expressive resources, howthey are or what impressions they cause.

Some descriptions are given with special names:

• Topography, in the case of a passage.

• Chronography, if it describes the time and parts.

• Portrait, In the case of a person. In turn, it is given with different names:

➢ Prosopography, describing the exterior of a person or even an animal.

➢ Etopeya, if onlydescribes the moral traits of the character.

➢ Cartoon, it exaggerates the salient features of it.

➢ Self-portrait, when the author describes himself.

12. 2 Types of description

Descriptions can be classified according to different characteristics: the shape, the point of view of its author or the mood he/she is and what is described.

According to its form, it can bescientific or literary, according to the author's point of view, it can be static or dynamic or based on the mood of the perceiver and what is perceived, it can be pictorial, typographical or film.

• Scientific descriptions, they represent something objectively, its components and its purposes to publicize them accurate.

• Literary descriptions, represent something in a subjective way, togenerate an impression or a certain feeling..

• Static descriptions, they reflect the form of something, their physical appearance, with no movement in time and space.

• Dynamics, suggest something in a way they seem to be living.

• In the pictorials, the describer and the object are motionless.

• Topographic descriptions, the character in motion illustrates somethingmotionless, as when a traveler describes a landscape viewed from a moving vehicle.

• In a film, a moving character illustrates an object in motion.

12.3 Description Techniques.

To make a good description, first it is necessary to observe carefully what is going to be described, reflect about what was observed, select the aspects to be emphasized by significant, reject those less importantand prepare a plan or script that highlight the main ideas from the secondary ones and arrange them in a logical order to reach the objectives.

Among the expressive elements use in the description, the followings stand out:

• Adjectives, which allow us to highlight certain details, but their abuse is reprehensible.

• Comparisons and metaphors, which serve to clarify issues andgive them beauty.

• Enumerations, which are used to complete ideas and precepts.

• Exaggerations, providing they are moderate, they can tone down some of the features of what is described.


The Adverb and Adverbial Phrases

The adverb is a kind of word or part of the sentence that has its own meaning and it is unchanging, that does not support changes in gender, number,person, time, etc. When a group of words in the sentence fulfills the function of an adverb, it is called an adverbial phrase.

According to its meaning, adverbs and adverbial phrases may be: of place, time, manner, quantity, affirmation, denial, doubt, possibility or probability.


Fixed Phrases and Idioms

Fixed phrases are certain groups of words, unalterably, to be used in anyspeech in figurative sense. Fixed phrases do not contain any statement or they express them as a proverb or comparison.

Idioms are fixed expressions, deprivation of a language, which meaning is not clear from the words they are the formed.

Chapter 13 The Written Statement

1. The Written Statement

The written statement consists on explaining a theme or topic with the final...
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