Comparing rhetorical structures of different languages: The influence of translation strategies

Comparing rhetorical structures of different languages: The influence of translation strategies
Comparing rhetorical structures in different languages: The influence of
translation strategies
Iria da Cunha and Mikel Iruskieta
Discourse Studies 2010 12: 563
DOI: 10.1177/1461445610371054
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Comparing rhetorical
structures in different
languages: The influence of
translation strategies
Discourse Studies
12(5) 563–598
© The Author(s) 2010
Reprints and permission: sagepub.
DOI: 10.1177/1461445610371054
Iria da Cunha
Université d’Avignon et des Pays de Vaucluse, France and Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain
Mikel Iruskieta
University of the Basque Country (UPV/EHU), Spain
The study we report in this article addresses the results of comparing the rhetorical trees from
two different languages carried out by two annotators starting from the Rhetorical Structure
Theory (RST). Furthermore, we investigate the methodology for a suitable evaluation, both
quantitative and qualitative, of these trees. Our corpus contains abstracts of medical research
articles written both in Spanish and Basque, and extracted from Gaceta Médica de Bilbao (‘Medical
Journal of Bilbao’). The results demonstrate that almost half of the annotator disagreement is due
to the use of translation strategies that notably affect rhetorical structures.
annotation, discourse analysis, evaluation, medical research articles, rhetorical relations, Rhetorical
Structure Theory, textual corpus, translation strategies
1. Introduction
Writing abstracts of research articles both in a lingua franca (English, French, etc.) and
in local languages (Catalan, Spanish, Basque, etc.) is nowadays usual among the scientific community. In fact, it has become a requisite for the publication in some scientific
journals. As a result, it is possible to obtain bilingual corpora to investigate how the
Corresponding author:
Iria da Cunha, Université d’Avignon et des Pays de Vaucluse, Laboratoire Informatique d’Avignon, 339,
chemin des Meinajaries, 84911 Avignon, France and Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Roc Boronat, 138, 08018
Barcelona, Spain.
Email: [email protected]
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
rhetorical structures of abstracts are shown in each language and how translation strategies affect discourse structure. Some authors have carried out studies about the evaluation of rhetorical structure annotation (Carlson et al., 2001; Marcu, 2000a; Marcu et al., 1999)
and about the comparison of rhetorical structures in different languages: Chinese–English
(Cui, 1986; Kong, 1998; Ramsay, 2000, 2001), English–Dutch (Abelen et al., 1993),
English–French (Delin et al., 1996; Salkie and Oates, 1999), Portuguese–French–English
(Scott et al., 1998) and English–Japanese (Marcu et al., 2000), among others. However,
to our knowledge, no studies exist on the way that translation strategies affect the process
of rhetorical annotation and on the evaluation of annotator agreement.
In this work, we use Rhetorical Structure Theory (RST) (Mann and Thompson, 1988)
since it is a language-independent theory. RST is a descriptive theory for textual organization that has been proven to be very useful in describing a document by characterizing
its structure with relations maintained among its discursive or rhetorical elements (e.g.
Circumstance, Elaboration, Motivation, Evidence, Justification, Cause, Purpose,
Antithesis, Condition, List, Contrast, etc.). As Taboada and Mann (2006) state: ‘RST
addresses text organization by means of relations that hold between parts of a text. It
explains coherence by postulating a hierarchical, connected structure of texts, in which
every part of a text has a role, a function to play, with respect to other parts in the text.’
RST determines a set of relations among the discursive units of texts. As a rule, one of
the units is more essential to the speaker’s purpose (nucleus), while the other one (satellite) provides some rhetorical information about it. This is the more usual structural
model between these two units (almost always adjacent units, although there are some
exceptions). These relations are named ‘nuclear’ relations (e.g. Circumstance,
Elaboration, Motivation, Evidence, etc.). In the case of relations with more than one
central unit with regard to the author’s purposes, the relation is named ‘multinuclear’ and
a coordinated relation is established (e.g. List, Joint, Contrast, etc.). For a more detailed
explanation of RST, we recommend reading the article by Mann and Thompson (1988)
or the RST web site by Mann (2005).
RST is used to inquire into several theoretical and applied subjects explained in
Taboada and Mann (2005) as, for example, automatic generation of texts, automatic
summarization, textual analysis, automatic translation, writing teaching, acquisition of
discursive knowledge, spoken discourse analysis, information extraction, etc. Some relevant works on these subjects are, among others, Bouayad-Agha (2000), Burstein and
Marcu (2003), da Cunha (2008), da Cunha et al. (2007), Ghorbel et al. (2001), Haouam
and Marir (2003) and Marcu (2000a). In addition, some rhetorical parsers in different
languages are also based on this theory: Sumita et al. (1992) in Japanese, Marcu (1998)
in English, and Pardo and Nunes (2008) and Pardo et al. (2004) in Brazilian Portuguese.
There is a current project to develop this parser for the Spanish language (da Cunha and
Torres-Moreno, 2010). A rhetorical parser is a system that automatically analyzes a text,
giving as output the rhetorical tree of this text in terms of RST. This kind of parser has three
stages: rhetorical segmentation, determination of RST relations and development of rhetorical trees. They are usually based on lexical-syntactic rules and statistical techniques.
However, though widely used, some objections have been made to RST. Stede (2008),
for example, criticizes its ambiguity, since many assumptions that annotators carry out
cannot be made explicit in a single tree. The difficulty of obtaining the same rhetorical
tree of a text from different annotators would prove this subjectivity:
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
An RST-style analysis of a text, on the other hand, cuts ‘vertically’: It tries to capture the
essence of coherence within a single representation structure, making a series of quite different
simplifications along the way. We do not doubt that this can be an insightful instrument for
studying text – RST has been quite successful for a variety of purposes. But there are inherent
limitations on the explanatory power when information from different realms is conflated in a
single tree structure: On the one hand, one cannot do full justice to the separate realms; on the
other hand, the single tree structure becomes ambiguous, because when crafting it, many underlying assumptions cannot be made explicit. (Stede, 2008: 329)
All the considerations taken into account until now lead us to formulate the following
interesting questions:
• Is it possible to compare the rhetorical structures of a parallel corpus of medical
texts in two very different languages such as a Romance language (Spanish) and
a Non-Indo-European language (Basque) by means of the same theory? Do these
texts share a similar superstructure?
• Taking into account the difficulty of two annotators carrying out the same rhetorical analysis with RST relations, how do translation strategies affect the agreement on the rhetorical structure of parallel texts? Which linguistic differences
exist in both rhetorical structures?
• Which is the best evaluation method in order to determine the factors affecting the
evaluation of rhetorical structure (translation strategies or linguistic differences;
theoretical abstraction level or ambiguity of the rhetorical structure)?
In this article we aim to answer these questions. With this intention, an experiment has
been designed. First, the corpus was annotated with rhetorical relations (one author
annotated the Basque corpus and the other annotated the Spanish one). This corpus contains 20 abstracts in Spanish and Basque, included in medical research articles from the
Gaceta Médica de Bilbao1 (‘Medical Journal of Bilbao’). Afterwards, both annotations
were compared and the differences among them were observed. The methodology used
in this experiment is explained in section 2. In section 3, we give the details of the results
of the quantitative and qualitative evaluations on spans, nuclearity and rhetorical relations. Conclusions are presented in section 4.
2. Methodology
The methodology of our research included several phases. First, a corpus of analysis was
built. Second, departure criteria with regard to the segmentation of the text into units and
to the specific relations used were defined. Third, the corpus texts were labeled by the
annotators (one in Spanish and one in Basque). Fourth, quantitative analysis was carried
out. Fifth, qualitative analysis was performed.
2.1. Corpus
Nowadays, no parallel Spanish–Basque corpora are available for research purposes.
Research groups have to develop their own corpus in order to carry out contrastive
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
research in these two languages. For this reason, we had to create a specific corpus to
perform our analysis. There are no previous studies comparing rhetorical structures in
Spanish and Basque. As mentioned, our corpus contains 20 abstracts in Spanish and
Basque included in medical research articles from the Gaceta Médica de Bilbao written
by medical specialists between the years 2000 and 2008.
The first reason to choose this corpus was that this journal requests that authors submit the articles in Spanish and the corresponding abstracts in Spanish, Basque and
English. As most of the authors of the texts of our corpus are Basque and a relevant portion of the Basque population is bilingual, we assume that they themselves wrote both
the abstracts in Spanish and Basque. Nevertheless, in some cases, the author may have
asked for some help to write the Basque abstract. We think this fact is not really relevant,
because the journal gives the authors very detailed guidelines about the information that
they have to include in their abstracts (in the three mentioned languages). Authors are
asked to use in their abstracts the IMRD structure (Swales, 1990): Introduction, Methods,
Results and Discussion:
The summary must contain approximately 150 words and it must include:
a) the purpose of the study,
b) the used procedures and the principal findings,
c) the most relevant conclusions, with emphasis on what is new or relevant in the article.2
We think these two facts (bilingualism and journal guidelines) guarantee that
both abstracts (Spanish and Basque) include the same information and a similar
The second reason to choose this corpus is to analyze the relations among macrostructures and genres and, in this way, to highlight a rather open question of RST. As Taboada
and Mann (2006) state: ‘A more exhaustive study of different genres would throw light
on the relationship between macrostructures or genres and RST structures.’ We have
selected a specialized corpus that contains medical texts with a very specific genre: the
research article. In the future, we plan to analyze a general corpus to compare it with this
specialized corpus.
Appendix Table 1 shows the information of the corpus texts (title, author[s] and year
of publication).
2.2. Departure criteria
In order to avoid circularities as much as possible, we first define what is an EDU
(Elementary Discourse Unit) in an abstract way and, second, we segment all the text
only focusing on syntactic clues (see section 2.2.1.) before carrying out the rhetorical
2.2.1. EDU segmentation. Mann and Thompson (1988) proposed a definition of discourse unit based on a theory-neutral classification. Their motivation was to describe
a theoretical frame for RST. To this end, they proposed an abstract definition and they
escaped from a circular definition:
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Unit size is arbitrary but the division of the text into units should be based on some theoryneutral classification. That is, for interesting results, the units should have independent functional integrity. In our analyses, units are essentially clauses, except that clausal subjects and
complements and restrictive relative clauses are considered parts of their host clause units
rather than separate units. (Mann and Thompson, 1988: 6)
Although Marcu (1999) uses RST as well, his definition of discourse unit has a different
motivation: the conformation of a corpus of tagged documents for the research community. Thus, the annotation should offer all the possible information. As he states:
One (probably) uncontroversial choice would be to take sentences as the elementary units of
discourse. Unfortunately, if we do so, we leave lots of rhetorical information outside the scope
of our analysis. (Marcu, 1999: 9)
Marcu’s definition of unit can be controversial in some aspects because of its circular
nature, but for Marcu this is a secondary question given that it does not interfere with his
main motivation.
Our goal is far from both Mann and Thompson’s (1988) and Marcu’s (1999) proposals because, first, we want to compare the rhetorical structure of translations at a propositional level and, second, we want to analyze some problems that appear during the
annotation process. Therefore, in this work, we do not consider it necessary to carry out
such a detailed analysis as Marcu.
With regard to EDU segmentation, we follow more or less the most common set of
guidelines for segmenting text in RST. Carlson and Marcu (2001) departed from them in
some aspects and we have revised some questions from their manual. Some specifications were made so that we would be able to clearly differentiate syntactic and discursive
levels. In this work, we consider that EDUs must include a finite verb (that is, they have
to constitute a sentence or a clause) and must show, strictly speaking, a rhetorical relation. These established specifications are the following ones:3
a) In Carlson and Marcu (2001), complements of attribution verbs (speech acts and
other cognitive acts) are treated as EDUs, as example 1a shows:4
1a. [Bush indicated] [there might be ‘room for flexibility’ in a bill] [. . .]
In contrast, our approach does not consider these complements of attribution verbs as
EDUs, and we would segment the same passage as example 1b shows:
1b. [Bush indicated there might be ‘room for flexibility’ in a bill] [. . .]
The clause ‘there might be ‘‘room for flexibility’’ in a bill’ constitutes a direct object
(from a traditional grammar-oriented approach) or an actant II (from a dependency grammaroriented approach) of the verb ‘to indicate’ and, because of that, we consider it only at
this level (syntactic).
We do not consider the Attribution relation for three types of reasons: a) a definitional
reason: it does not make explicit any kind of writer’s intention, so Attribution does not
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have the same status as other RST relations (Stede, 2008); b) a language level reason: it
can be identified only by syntax rules (Skadhauge and Hardt, 2005); and c) a procedural
reason: it implies circularity in EDU definition. As Stede (2008: 316) states:
Attribution thus does not have the same status as, say, relations of causality or contrast: The
relationship between an event of saying and the specific contents of that saying is different from
a coherence relation linking two complete propositions.
b) Carlson and Marcu (2001) specify that the clauses that depend to ‘so that their
clients can’ are treated as various EDUs and these are considered as satellites in a Purpose
relation. In turn, the satellite constitutes a multinuclear List of coordinated clauses, as we
can see in example 2a:
2a.[Equipped with cellular phones, laptop computers, calculators and a pack of blank checks,]
[they parcel out money] [so that their clients can find temporary living quarters,] [buy
food,] [replace lost clothing,] [repair broken water heaters,] [and replaster walls.]
In contrast, we would treat all these clauses as a single EDU:
2b.[Equipped with cellular phones, laptop computers, calculators and a pack of blank checks,]
[they parcel out money] [so that their clients can find temporary living quarters, buy food,
replace lost clothing, repair broken water heaters, and replaster walls.]
c) In Carlson and Marcu (2001), relative clauses, nominal postmodifiers and clauses
that break up other legitimate EDUs are treated as embedded discourse units, while we
do not consider these units as such. Several examples follow:
Relative clauses:
3a.[A separate inquiry by Chemical cleared Mr. Edelson of allegations] [that he had been
lavishly entertained by a New York money broker.]
3b.[A separate inquiry by Chemical cleared Mr. Edelson of allegations that he had been lavishly entertained by a New York money broker.]
Nominal postmodifiers with non-finite clause:
4a.[The results underscore Sears’s difficulties] [in implementing the ‘everyday low pricing’
strategy] [that it adopted in March, as part of a broad attempt] [to revive its retailing
4b.[The results underscore Sears’s difficulties in implementing the ‘everyday low pricing’
strategy that it adopted in March, as part of a broad attempt to revive its retailing business.]
5a.[The fact] [that this happened two years ago] [and there was a recovery] [gives people
some comfort] [that this won’t be a problem.]
5b.[The fact that this happened two years ago and there was a recovery gives people some
comfort that this won’t be a problem.]
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6a.[The Tass news agency said the 1990 budget anticipates income of 429.9 billion rubles]
[($US693.4 billion)] [and expenditures of 489.9 billion rubles] [($US790.2 billion).]
6b.[The Tass news agency said the 1990 budget anticipates income of 429.9 billion rubles
($US693.4 billion) and expenditures of 489.9 billion rubles ($US790.2 billion).]
In this work, we only segment units appearing in parentheses when they clearly constitute an EDU, or an element maintaining some discourse relation with another element
and containing a finite verb.
Coordinated clauses in embedded units:
7a.[She signed up,] [starting as an ‘inside’ adjuster,] [who settles minor claims] [and does a
lot of work by phone.]
7b.[She signed up,] [starting as an ‘inside’ adjuster, who settles minor claims and does a lot
of work by phone.]
d) In Carlson and Marcu (2001), phrases that begin with a strong discourse marker,
such as because, in spite of, as a result of, according to, are treated as EDUs, as examples
8a and 9a show:
8a.[But some big brokerage firms said] [they don’t expect major problems] [as a result of
margin calls.]
9a. [Today, no one gets in or out of the restricted area] [without De Beers’s stingy approval.]
In this work, we consider that sentences starting by these markers are EDUs only if a
finite verb also exists. Therefore, we would segment the previous examples as follows:
8b.[But some big brokerage firms said they don’t expect major problem as a result of margin
9b. [Today, no one gets in or out of the restricted area without De Beers’s stingy approval.]
e) Carlson and Marcu (2001) establish several criteria to determine EDUs’ boundaries. In this work, we only use these criteria if the marked EDU contains a finite verb.
Some examples are offered below:
10a.[If the government can stick with them,] [it will be able to halve this year’s 120 billion
ruble] [(US$193 billion)] [deficit.]5
10b.[If the government can stick with them,] [it will be able to halve this year’s 120 billion
ruble (US$193 billion) deficit.]
11a.[This will require us to define] [– and redefine –] [what is ‘necessary’ or ‘appropriate’
11b. [This will require us to define – and redefine – what is ‘necessary’ or ‘appropriate’ care.]
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
Las válvulas
ahorradoras de
oxígeno (VAO),
al liberar oxígeno
únicamente durante
la inspiración,
evitan que se pierda
durante la fase
Figure 1. Rhetorical tree showing a Same-unit relation
With regard to the utilization of other punctuation marks (comma, full-stop, semicolon,
etc.) like boundary marks, we agree with Carlson and Marcu (2001: 30):
Commas and periods are not independent justification for an EDU boundary. If a unit is a
legitimate EDU and it ends with a comma or period, the punctuation is included as part of that
Finally, it is important to highlight that an EDU can be truncated by another one (that is,
it can include another EDU). If this occurs in our work, as in Carlson and Marcu (2001),
the two fragments of the first EDU are segmented and they are linked later with a Sameunit relation, which is not a relation but a convention. For example, Figure 1 would be
labeled as follows:
12.[Las válvulas ahorradoras de oxígeno (VAO),] [al liberar oxígeno únicamente durante la
inspiración,] [evitan que se pierda durante la fase respiratoria,] […]
English translation: [Oxygen Conserving Valves (OCV),] [because of their release of oxygen
only during inhalation,] [avoid losing oxygen during the breathing phase,] […]
2.2.2. Rhetorical relations. Concerning the detection of rhetorical relations and nuclearity
(that is, with regard to the decision of considering a segment as nucleus or satellite), the
following tasks were carried out:
a) The list of rhetorical relations of the RST was determined. There are various classifications of rhetorical relations: the classic one by Mann and Thompson of 24 relations
(Mann and Thompson, 1988), the extended one by Mann and Thompson of 30 relations
(Mann, 2005) and Marcu’s classification of 136 relations (Carlson et al., 2001), among
others. The extended classification (Mann, 2005) was chosen for the annotation of the
parallel corpus. As Marcu et al. (1999: 55) point out, reduction in the relations’ taxonomy
does not have a significant impact on annotators’ agreement:
The results [. . .] show that a significant reduction in the size of the taxonomy of relations may
not have a significant impact on agreement (kgg is only about 4% higher than kg). This suggests
that choosing one relation from a set of rhetorically similar relations produces some, but not too
much, confusion.
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b) We looked for a real representative example of each relation and nuclei and satellites
were marked. Examples are taken from the corpus used in da Cunha (2008), containing
Spanish medical articles that were extracted from the journal Medicina Clínica (‘Clinical
Medicine’).6 Once the Spanish examples were selected, they were translated into Basque
and their nuclei and satellites were marked.
Appendix Table 2 includes the list of relations used in this work, specifying if they are
multinuclear relations (N-N) or nuclear relations (N-S). For each relation, an example in
Spanish and Basque is provided, where its nuclei (N) and satellites (S) are marked.
2.3. Rhetorical annotation
Once departure criteria were established, both annotators labeled the 20 texts of the corpus with RST relations (one in Spanish [A1] and another one in Basque [A2]). The
annotation was divided into two main stages: EDU segmentation and rhetorical analysis.
2.3.1. EDU segmentation. In this stage, each annotator segmented the 20 abstracts of the
corpus into EDUs by using the RSTTool (O’Donnell, 2000).7 This task was done separately and without any contact among annotators.
Once the data on the agreement of the performed segmentations by both annotators
was collected, we carried out a small discussion in order to homogenize the segmentation
of Spanish and Basque abstracts. This homogenization was carried out in order to minimize the noise that could arise from a different segmentation. By these means, we aimed
at obtaining, first, a more detailed quantification of the nuclearity and of the relations of
rhetorical trees and, secondly, an evaluation of the factors affecting the structure. This
comparison was performed manually (measuring precision and recall), due to the current
lack of automatic tools comparing rhetorical trees in different languages. Mazeiro and
Pardo (2009) have developed the RSTeval tool, which does compare rhetorical trees but
in the same language, so it could not be used in this study.
Since our comparison had to be manually done, we considered it appropriate to carry
out this task of EDU homogenization so that annotators could label the same segments,
establish relations among them, build the rhetorical trees and, finally, carry out the comparison among them in a more accurate way.
2.3.2. Rhetorical analysis. In this stage, each annotator labeled the homogenized segmentation of the studied abstracts, marking rhetorical relations among EDUs and determining which of these EDUs were nuclei or satellites. To this end, the RSTTool and the
extended classification of rhetorical relations were used.
2.4. Quantitative analysis
After the annotation, a quantitative analysis about the two aspects detailed in the previous section was performed.
2.4.1. EDU segmentation. The contrast between the EDU segmentation of both annotators
was carried out by evaluating precision and recall. To measure precision, we observed
the coincidence between the selected EDUs by A2 and the selected EDUs by A1. To
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Presentamos los
resultados obtenidos
en los pacientes
intervenidos por pie
plano flexible infantil
con la técnica de
calcáneo-stop en
nuestro servicio.
Estudiamos 47
y 82 pies intervenidos
entre los años 1992 y
resultados clínicos
excelentes en 41
pies (64,1%), buenos
Tras las pérdidas por y radiológicamente 49
en 22 (34,4%) y
pies con la medición
diversos motivos en
malos en 1 caso
de una serie de
la revisión de los
ángulos en carga pre
casos, valoramos
clínicamente 64 pies y
mediante la escala
de Smith y Millar
Figure 2. Rhetorical tree in Spanish by A1
measure recall, we compared the number of detected EDUs by A2 with the number of
detected EDUs by A1. This analysis was carried out, on the one hand, for each individual
text and, on the other hand, for the set of texts of our corpus.
2.4.2. Rhetorical analysis. To quantify the agreement between the rhetorical analyses
by both annotators, we used Marcu’s (2000b) method. Specifically, we obtained
data concerning detected spans (i.e. sets of related EDUs), nuclearity and rhetorical
To compare both rhetorical analyses, precision and recall were measured again. To
measure precision, we counted the number of detected spans, nuclei and satellites, and
rhetorical relations marked by A2 coinciding with the ones selected by A1. To measure
recall, we counted the total number of the same elements detected by A2, with regard to
the total number detected by A1. Once again, this analysis was performed for each text
and for the texts of our corpus taken together. For instance, Figure 2 shows a rhetorical
tree fragment in Spanish carried out by A1, whereas Figure 3 shows the rhetorical tree of
the same passage in Basque, carried out by A2. The English abstract passage of the
author that corresponds with this text is provided in here, in order to make the example
more understandable to the reader:8
English translation:
Unit 1:[We report our experience and the results obtained with surgical treatment of infantile
flexible flan foot using the calcaneus-stop technique.]
Unit 2: [From 1992 through 2004, 47 patients]
Unit 3: [and 82 feet were studied.]
Unit 4: [After our revision, 64 feet were evaluated clinically using the Smith and Millar scale]
Unit 5:[and 49 feet were evaluated radiologically by several preoperative and postoperative
radiological variables.]
Unit 6:[The clinical results were excellent in 41 feet (64.1%), good in 22 feet (34.4%) and
bad in only case (1.5%).]
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
Hona hemen oin
malgua izateagatik
teknika erabiliz gure
ebakuntza egin
diegun haurrek
izandako emaitzak.
1992. eta 2004. urte
bitartean, 47 gaixo
aztertu genituen,
eta 82 oinetan egin
genuen ebakuntza.
41 oinetan (%64,1)
emaitza bikainak
erdietsi genituen; 22
oinetan (%34,4)
emaitza onak; eta
kasu bakarrean
(%1,5) emaitza
Era berean,
erradiologikoki 49 oin
medikoetan, hainbat
arrazoirengatik, kasu aztertu genituen,
ebakuntza aurretik
batzuen aztarna
eta ondoren zenbait
galdu ostean,
karga angelu neurtuz.
klinikoki 64 oin
aztertu genituen,
Smith eta Millar
eskalaren bitartez.
Figure 3. Rhetorical tree in Basque by A2
Table 1 below exemplifies Marcu’s (2000b) evaluation methodology. It includes a comparison of detected spans, nuclearity and relations annotated by A1 and A2. We have
used the NUCLEUS9 label to refer to the nuclei of nuclear relations, and the relation
name (e.g. Result, Elaboration, Means, List, etc.) to refer either to the satellites of nuclear
relations or to the nuclei of multinuclear relations. It is necessary to take into account
that, since we homogenized the EDUs in the segmentation stage (see section 2.3.1.), the
detected EDUs by A1 and A2 always coincided. In Table 1 we have indicated in grey the
differences between both annotators, where nuclei are denoted by ‘N’ and satellites by ‘S’.
Table 1. Quantitative evaluation using Marcu’s (2000b) method
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
Table 2. Quantitative evaluation results of
rhetorical trees showed in Figures 2 and 3
After the data were formalized with this method, we measured precision and recall, in
the way explained above. Table 2 shows the results of this evaluation. The three factors
obtain 100 percent of recall, whereas precision oscillates between 80 percent (spans) and
70 percent (nuclearity and rhetorical relations).
2.5. Qualitative analysis
As for qualitative analysis, we also focused on questions concerning EDU segmentation
and rhetorical analysis.
2.5.1. EDU segmentation. After we quantified the differences of EDU segmentation by
both annotators, we observed the specific cases on which they differed and we investigated the possible reasons for disagreement.
We observed that, when homogenizing EDUs, some aspects contradicted the established guidelines of segmentation. This is due to the fact that translation strategies
also affect segmentation. For instance, some passages are considered as a single EDU
in Spanish, but they have been segmented into two units in order to carry out the
13a. [Se realiza el estudio de la proteína 14–3-3, que resulta ser positivo.]
English translation: [The study of 14–3-3 protein is carried out, which obtains positive
13b. [14–3-3 proteinaren azterketa egin zaio,] [eta emaitza positiboak lortu dira.]
English translation: [The study of 14–3-3 protein is carried out,] [and its results are positive.]
Example 13a above shows that A1 annotated the Spanish passage as a single EDU, since
relative clauses are not considered as EDUs. However, in example 13b, we observe that in
Basque this relative clause was translated like a main sentence, related to the previous one
by means of a discourse marker, the coordinative conjunction eta (‘and’). In order to homogenize the segments, we decided to divide the Spanish EDU into two EDUs, as follows:
13c. [Se realiza el estudio de la proteína 14–3-3,] [que resulta ser positivo.]
English translation: [The study of 14–3-3 protein is carried out,] [which obtains positive
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Table 3. Qualitative partial evaluation of spans and
The nuclei and the satellites are denoted by N and S,
Table 4. Qualitative partial
evaluation of relations
Annotated relations
Both annotators marked the same relation for this passage: the Result relation. This is
due to the fact that there is the verb ‘result’ into the second EDU, and it produces more
effect than the syntactic structure or the discourse marker. Probably, if there was another
verb, the Elaboration relation would be considered in Spanish because of the relative
clause, and the List relation would be considered in Basque because of the conjunction.
2.5.2. Rhetorical analysis. Though the evaluation method of Marcu (2000b) exemplified in
section 2.4.2 is considered to be valid, the method only considers the absolute agreement
in all factors. Thus, a disagreement on the segmentation or a disagreement on the lower
spans will affect significantly the agreement on the upper rhetorical relations of a tree.
For example, if we follow Marcu’s (2000b) method, disagreement with regard to spans,
nuclearity and relations is observed. However, the five relations that were marked by
both annotators coincide. In fact, there are differences concerning the detected nodes, but
not with regard to the detected relations. We consider it necessary to also carry out this
type of approach, more optimistic in a certain way and that we call ‘qualitative partial
evaluation’, because we believe this approach to be necessary in order to detect and analyze the linguistic differences in rhetorical structure that are originated by translation
strategies. Tables 3 and 4 include the data of this evaluation, concerning, in the first
place, spans and nuclearity and, in the second place, relations.10
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Table 5. Qualitative partial evaluation
results of rhetorical trees showed in
Figures 2 and 3
Table 5 shows the qualitative partial evaluation results of the example. We notice that
precision and recall are 100 percent in all cases, except for precision in spans, which is
80 percent.
Since we could obtain quantitative results concerning spans and nuclearity with
Marcu’s (2000b) method, we only focused on the qualitative partial evaluation of rhetorical relations. We think this qualitative evaluation is an effective way to detect the
linguistic differences affecting rhetorical structure.
In the qualitative partial evaluation we systematically analyzed the causes of the disagreement between annotators. On the one hand, we observed the phenomena that could
cause differences concerning the annotation agreement, mentioned by Mann and
Thompson (1988): ambiguity of text structure, simultaneous analyses and analytic mistakes, among others. On the other hand, we analyzed the phenomenon reflected in Marcu
et al. (2000: 10), consisting of changing the type of rhetorical relation when translating:
Hence, the mappings in (4) provide an explicit representation of the way information is reordered and re-packaged when translated from Japanese into English. However, when translating text, it is also the case that the rhetorical rendering changes. What is realized in Japanese
using a CONTRAST relation can be realized in English using, for example, a COMPARISON
or a CONCESSION relation.
In this way, we detected the possible causes of discrepancies among annotators and the
influence that translation strategies have on rhetorical structure (as explained in section 3.2.).
In order to count all the relations, we decided to consider each nuclear relation as one
relation, while we considered multinuclear relations as binary ones. For example, a List
relation with four nuclei is represented by joining its nuclei in a binary way, obtaining
three multinuclear relations, each one with two nuclei. Figures 4 and 5 show respectively
the Same-level annotation and the binary annotation of this List relation.
By these means, apart from correctly counting multinuclear relations, we could compare, for example, a) three units or spans of a List relation with three nuclei (by A1) with
b) a List relation with two nuclei and one Elaboration relation (by A2). If we had not
done it in that way, we would not have been able to compare a List relation by A1 with a
List relation and an Elaboration relation by A2, and the evaluation could have lost precision. Moreover, it would not be correct to count as relations all the nuclear elements of a
List relation, since multinuclear relations would then be more relevant than the others in
the qualitative partial evaluation.
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De los 400 tumores
336 (84.0%) fueron
carcinomas ductales
infiltrantes NOS,
32 (8.0%)
22 carcinomas
tubulares puros
, y los 10 restantes
correspondieron a
otras variedades
histológicas menos
Figure 4. Same-level annotation of List relation
22 carcinomas
tubulares puros
De los 400 tumores
336 (84.0%) fueron
carcinomas ductales
infiltrantes NOS,
, y los 10 restantes
correspondieron a
otras variedades
histológicas menos
32 (8.0%)
Figure 5. Binary interpretation of List relation
3. Results
In the previous sections the methodology of our experiment was presented. In this section we present segmentation and nucleus-satellite issues, with their corresponding
results of agreement, and a discussion of the used translation strategies.
3.1. Segmentation issues
The number of segmented EDUs by A1 in Spanish texts is 206, while the number of
segmented EDUs by A2 in Basque texts is 238. We think there are more EDUs in Basque
than in Spanish because Basque nominalization and subordination work with different
syntactic procedures (Arakama et al., 2005). Arakama et al. (2005) state that some comprehension problems arise with literal translations of Spanish relatives. To avoid this
problem, there is more than one translation strategy, one of them being the splitting of
sentences. Language typology has an influence when nominalization is done, because
Basque typology uses more verbs than nominalization, given that the ellipsis of verbal
arguments is common in Basque (due to verb concordance). Thus, literal translation has
no sense or comprehension problems arise.
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Both annotators agreed on 152 EDUs. Following the explained methodology in section 2.4.1., we obtained precision (63.9%) and recall (86.6%) of the performed segmentation. The sources of disagreement are linguistic differences, being mainly motivated by
translation strategies (85 cases) from Spanish to Basque, which we explore in detail in
this section.
We noticed that, sometimes, linguistic differences between texts in Basque and Spanish
cause a different segmentation of the same passage by annotators (see example 14).
14a. [Hemos estudiado retrospectivamente 23 infecciones protésicas de rodilla tratadas en
nuestro hospital entre el año 1996 y el 2004 de las cuales hemos excluido 6 por diferentes
English translation: [We retrospectively have studied 23 prosthetic knee infections that were
treated in our hospital between 1996 and 2004 of which we have excluded 6 for different
14b. [1996. eta 2004. urteen bitartean gure ospitalean izandako 23 infekzio protesiko aztertu
ditugu.] [Horien artean, 6 kasu baztertu ditugu hainbat arrazoiengatik.]
English translation: [We have studied 23 prosthetic knee infections that were treated in our
hospital between 1996 and 2004.] [Of these, we have excluded 6 for different reasons.]
In example 14a, we observe that A1 has established a single EDU in Spanish while, in
example 14b, we notice that A2 has segmented the same passage in two EDUs. This
disagreement on the segmentation phase is due to two facts: a) the relative clause is not
considered as an EDU and b) the syntactic structure of the relative clause has been translated into Basque as a different sentence by using punctuation.
When the evaluation of the segmentation was carried out, the same difficulty mentioned by Carlson and Marcu (2001: 2) was found: they declare that the boundary
between discourse and syntax can be very blurry. We think this fact is more prominent
when structures of two languages are compared:
The first step in characterizing the discourse structure of a text in our protocol is to determine
the elementary discourse units (EDUs), which are the minimal building blocks of a discourse
tree. Mann and Thompson (1988, p. 244) state that ‘RST provides a general way to describe the
relations among clauses in a text, whether or not they are grammatically or lexically signalled.’
Yet, applying this intuitive notion to the task of producing a large, consistently annotated corpus is extremely difficult, because the boundary between discourse and syntax can be very
Indeed, translation strategies are one of the causes influencing segmentation decisions.
Consider example 15 below:
15a. [Se han estudiado un total de 442 cánceres de mama unifocales de 2 cm o menos en la
pieza histológica (pT1) operados entre enero de 1993 y diciembre de 2005.]
English translation: [We have studied a total of 442 unifocal breast cancers of 2 cm or less in
the histological part (pT1) operated between January 1993 and December 2005.]
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15b. [Guztira, foku bakarreko 442 bularreko minbizi aztertu dira, pieza histologikoan (pT1)
2 cm edo gutxiago dituztenak.] [Guztiak 1993ko urtarrilaren eta 2005eko abenduaren artean
operatu ziren.]
English translation: [We have studied a total of 442 unifocal breast cancers of 2 cm or less in
histological part (pT1).] [All of them underwent surgery between January 1993 and December
In this example, the non-finite verb (the participle form operado [‘operated’]) was translated into Basque like a finite verb (operatu ziren [‘underwent surgery’]). Besides, the
sentence was separated by a full stop. These two facts strongly affect the segmentation in
both languages.
We observe various translation strategies affecting the performed segmentation by
both annotators, which we explore in detail in section 3.3. It is noteworthy that there is
almost a total segmentation agreement concerning EDUs that were not influenced by
translation strategies. Segmentation errors of annotators were minimal in these cases.
3.2. Nucleus-satellite issues
Disagreement with regard to the choice of nucleus and satellite is an interesting point of
RST. On the one hand, the choice depends on the way the information is presented or the
linguistic forms are employed (Marcu, 1999). On the other hand, the choice also depends
on the context or the point of view of the whole text (Bateman and Rondhuis, 1997). Stede
(2008: 317) criticizes RST because trees do not make the source of the choice explicit:
The final RST tree does not indicate whether some relation at the level of minimal units is there
because its definition is optimally fulfilled or because text global factors make it seem advantageous to select one particular nucleus, which is incidentally performed by that particular relation.
As described in section 2.4.2. above, we measured precision and recall to assess the
agreement between the two annotators on spans, nuclearity and rhetorical relations.
Table 6 shows an overall result for the 20 texts of the corpus. We noted that results in
terms of recall are similar, which is due to EDU homogenization, explained in section
2.3.1. However, results regarding precision vary. Despite this fact, the precision achieved
is substantially high in all cases: the agreement between the annotated spans is 92.5 percent, the agreement on nuclearity is 82.1 percent and the agreement regarding the relations is 68.3 percent.
Table 6. Results of the quantitative evaluation
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Concerning rhetorical analysis, we mainly observed two types of situations:
1) Ambiguity or different interpretations when choosing relations: Annotators labeled
differently some relations that could be ambiguous. For instance, in example 16, while
A1 annotated a relation of Background, A2 annotated a relation of Elaboration for the
same passage.
16a. [Han participado 92 pacientes ingresados en un Área Médica del Hospital de Basurto
(Bilbao).]N [Todos los pacientes fueron entrevistados para elaborar la historia patopsicobiográfica necesaria para aplicar la Clasificación Psicosomática de Pierre Marty.]S_
English translation: [92 patients admitted in a Medical Area Hospital de Basurto (Bilbao)
have been involved.]N [All these patients were interviewed to develop the patopsicobiographic history that is needed to apply the Psychosomatic Classification of Pierre Marty.]S_
16b. [Basurtoko (Bilbo) Ospitaleko Medikuntza Arlo batean ospitaleratuta dauden 92 gaixok
parte hartu dute.]S_Fondo [Pierre Martyren Sailkapen Psikosomatikoa aplikatzeko beharrezkoa den historia patopsikobiografikoa egiteko asmoz, elkarrizketa egin zitzaien gaixo guztiei.]N
English translation: [92 patients admitted in a Medical Area Hospital of Basurto (Bilbao) have
been involved.]S_Background [All these patients were interviewed to develop the patopsicobiographic history that is needed to apply the Psychosomatic Classification of Pierre Marty.]N
In this case, a disagreement regarding the nuclearity of the relation entails a different
interpretation about the existing relation between two EDUs. In the example above the
nucleus of the Spanish text is the first EDU (the participants of study) (16a), whereas the
nucleus of the Basque text is the second EDU (the research methodology) (16b).
Consider other examples:
17a. [Se estima que el 80% de los usuarios acuden por iniciativa propia a los servicios de
urgencia]N_Lista [y que el 70% de las consultas son consideradas leves por el personal sanitario.]N_Lista
English translation: [It is calculated that 80% of visitors come to emergency services by their
own initiative]N_List [and that 70% of consultations are considered like mild by the health
17b. [Erabiltzaileen %80ak bere kabuz erabakitzen dute larrialdi zerbitzu batetara jotzea]N
[eta kontsulta hauen %70a larritasun gutxikotzat jotzen dituzte zerbitzu hauetako medikuek.]
English translation: [80% of visitors come to emergency services by their own initiative]N
[and 70% of consultations are considered like mild by the health staff.]S_Elaboration
In example 17 there was also a disagreement concerning nuclearity. However, in this
case, the disagreement affects the nature of the relation: A1 annotated a paratactic relation of List (17a), while A2 annotated a hypotactic relation of Elaboration (17b).
18a. [Por lo demás existen buenos indicadores de proceso]S_Antítesis [pero se aprecia un
escaso registro de la capacidad funcional del paciente al alta, que dificulta la comparación de
los resultados de la atención sanitaria.]N
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English translation: [In addition, there are good indicators of the process]S_Antithesis [but
we see a poor record of the patient’s functional ability to discharge, which makes the comparison of health care results difficult.]N
18b. [Gainerakoan, prozesu adierazle egokiak daude,]N [baina altan dagoen gaixoaren lanen
funtzionalaren erregistro urria antzematen da, eta horrek osasun arretaren emaitzen alderaketa zailtzen du.]S_Concesión
English translation: [In addition, there are good indicators of the process]N [but we see a poor
record of the patient’s functional ability to discharge, and this makes the comparison of health
care results difficult.]N_Concession
In example 18 the disagreement is due to the different meanings of the relation. Both
annotators selected a hypotactic relation of presentation but, while A1 annotated an
Antithesis relation (18a), A2 annotated a Concession relation (18b).
In this example, the disagreement is not due to the translation, since linguistic forms
involved in the relation are identical, including the translation of the discourse marker
‘but’ (pero in Spanish and baina in Basque). Thus, we wonder which the source of the
disagreement is: is it really a problem of relations definition or maybe a more general
problem? This situation was considered by Stede (2008: 318):
Consider as one example the definitions of Antithesis and Concession. The constraints on the
nucleus and the intentions of the writer (i.e., the ‘effect’) are identical. Antithesis has no constraint
on the satellite, whereas Concession offers the constraint that ‘writer is not claiming that satellite
does not hold’. (Since Antithesis has no constraint here, does it properly subsume Concession?)
Finally, the constraints on the nucleus/satellite combinations are largely paraphrastic with the one
exception that Antithesis adds that ‘one cannot have positive regard for both situations’ (in nucleus
and satellite). In total, the differences are not very restrictive, so that in many contexts both definitions are equally applicable. But, in the presentational/subject-division of the relations suggested
by Mann and Thompson, Antithesis appears in the former, and Concession in the latter, despite
their effects being identical. So it is not clear on what grounds the grouping is made in this case.
2) Differences regarding Spanish–Basque translation strategies: the linguistic differences between these two languages sometimes imply that annotators interpret the same
passage differently (see examples 19 and 20).
19a. [Escogiendo la especialidad más barata existente en el mercado]S_Circunstancia
[podríamos alcanzar un ahorro de 6.463.400,35€.]N
English translation: [Choosing the cheapest specialty in the market]S_Circumstance [we
could achieve a saving of 6,463,400.35€.]N
19b. [Merkatuak eskaintzen digun espezialitate merkeena aukeratuko bagenu]S_Condición
[6.463.400,35€-ko aurrezpena lortuko genuke.]N
English translation: [If we chose the cheapest specialty in the market]S_Condition [we would
achieve a saving of 6,463,400.35€.]N
The gerund form (escogiendo [‘choosing’]) may indicate the relation of Circumstance in
Spanish. But in Basque no gerund is included in the sentence; the conditional mark (ba[‘if’]) in the verb (bagenu [‘(we) chose’]) justifies the annotation of the relation of Condition.
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20a. [En los 7 ítems se han encontrado diferencias estadísticamente significativas entre el grupo
de pacientes oncológicos con los pacientes afectos de otro tipo de patologías (p < 0.05).]N [Estos
ítems diferencian a los pacientes con neoplasias de otro tipo de pacientes, y permiten una valoración global de los mismos, ofreciendo una idea de las expectativas del proceso.]S_Elaboración
English translation: [In the 7 items we have found statistically significant differences between
the group of cancer patients and patients suffering from other pathologies (p < 0.05).]N [These
items differentiate patients with tumors from other patients, and they allow an overall assessment of the patients, providing an idea of the process prospects.]S_Elaboration
20b. [7 itemak aztertuta, estatistikoki desberdintasun aipagarriak aurkitu ziren gaixo onkologikoen eta bestelako patologiak dituzten gaixoen artean (p < 0.05).]N_Unión [Horrez gain,
item horiek neoplasiak dituzten gaixoak eta bestelako gaixoak bereizten dituzte, horiei buruzko
balorazio orokorra egiteko aukera ematen dute, eta prozesuaren igurkapenen gaineko argibideak ematen dizkigute.]N_Unión
English translation: [Having studied the 7 items, we have found statistically significant differences between the group of cancer patients and patients suffering from other pathologies
(p < 0.05).]N_Joint [In addition, these items differentiate patients with tumors and other
patients, they allow an overall assessment of the patients, and they provide an idea of the process prospects.]N_Joint
In Spanish, the relation of Elaboration was annotated due to the presence of the anaphora.
The semantic relation between both EDUs shows an elaboration of the same topic.
Nevertheless, in Basque, the additive connector horrez gain (‘in addition’) does not
allow inclusion of both EDUs in the same argumentative scale (Cuartero, 1995), since it
introduces a new topic in the speech. This fact causes A2 to select a multinuclear relation.
Therefore, it is evident that a different translation strategy affects the rhetorical analysis
of the text.
We studied this phenomenon systematically, which we explain in detail in section 3.3.
3.3. Discussion of translation strategies
As we have said in section 3.1, translation strategies are one of the causes influencing
segmentation decisions. We observe various translation strategies affecting the performed segmentation by both annotators. Specifically, the authors of the texts used two
main strategies to translate from Spanish into Basque. These two strategies constitute the
74.28 percent of all the translation strategies.
• Relative subordinate clauses in Spanish have been translated as separate sentences
in Basque.
• Missing elements from ellipsis and anaphors in Spanish are retaken in Basque,
forming new sentences.
The consequences of these translation strategies are:
• There are more EDUs in Basque than in Spanish. Specifically, in our corpus, there
are 13.45 percent more EDUs in Basque than in Spanish.
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• This difference between EDUs in the two languages significantly affects the
agreement on the segmentation, and therefore it affects in a gradual way the other
annotation levels and evaluated factors (spans, nuclearity and relations) as well.
This fact makes quantitative and qualitative evaluation more difficult to perform.
As we have said in section 3.2, translation strategies may be the cause of a different
rhetorical analysis. We include in Table 7 the used strategies to translate from Spanish
into Basque, with their frequencies.
Three of these translation strategies are mentioned in Arakama et al. (2005): completing ellipsis and/or dividing sentences, using a finite verb and deleting relative clauses.
Another of these strategies is used when the translator wants to provide more coherence
to the translation: using discourse markers (Zabala, 1996).
We provide some examples herein:
a) Completing ellipsis and/or dividing sentences:
21a. [Todos los pacientes presentaban una insuficiencia ventilatoria, en 10 casos de tipo
obstructivo y en los restantes de tipo no obstructivo o mixto.]
English translation: [All patients had ventilatory failure, 10 cases of obstructive type and the
remaining of non-obstructive or mixed type.]
21b. [Gaixo guztiek zeukaten aireztapen gutxiegitasuna;] [hamar kasutan butxaketa-motakoa
zen] [eta gainerakoetan ezbutxaketakoa edo mistoa zen.]
English translation: [All patients had ventilatory failure;] [10 cases were of obstructive type]
[and the remaining were of non-obstructive or mixed type.]
In this example, the translation strategy was in Basque to complete the ellipsis of verbs
describing the cases of ‘ventilatory failure’.
b) Using a finite verb:
22a. [Estudiamos 47 pacientes y 82 pies intervenidos entre los años 1992 y 2004.]
English translation: [We studied 47 patients and 82 feet undergoing surgery between 1992
and 2004.]
22b. [1992. eta 2004. urte bitartean, 47 gaixo aztertu genituen,] [eta 82 oinetan egin genuen
English translation: [Between 1992 and 2004, we studied 47 patients] [and we operated 82
Table 7. Translation strategies determining different rhetorical relations
Translation strategies
a) Completing ellipsis and/or dividing sentences
b) Using a finite verb
c) Using discourse markers
d) Deleting relative clauses
e) Other strategies
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The Spanish participle (intervenidos [‘undergoing surgery’]) was translated into Basque by
a structure with a finite verb and its direct object (ebakuntza egin genuen [‘(we) operated’]).
23a. [Nuestros resultados sugieren la presencia de alteraciones respiratorias crónicas con el
resultado de un déficit ventilatorio, varias décadas después del tratamiento con colapsoterapia; comprobando una buena respuesta al tratamiento con ventilación domiciliaria.]
English translation: [Our results suggest the presence of chronic respiratory disorders with
the result of a ventilatory deficit, several decades after treatment with Collapse Therapy; proving a good response to treatment with home ventilation.]
23b. [Gure emaitzek iradokitzen dute kolapsoterapiarekin egindako tratemendutik hamarkada
batzuk gerago arnas alterazio kronikoak daudela aireztapen déficit baten emaitzarekin;] [eta
egiaztatu da etxeko aireztapenarekin egindako tratamenduak erantzun ona izan duela.]
English translation: [Our results suggest the presence of chronic respiratory disorders with
the result of a ventilatory deficit, several decades after treatment with Collapse Therapy;] [and
a good response to treatment with home ventilation has been proved.]
In this example, the Spanish gerund (comprobando [‘proving’]) was translated into
Basque by the finite verb (egiaztatu da [‘(it) has been proved’]).
c) Using discourse markers:
24a. [Como cirugía primaria presenta una mortalidad del 0,5%] [y un 8,8% de complicaciones perioperatorias, destacando la hemorragia (4,8%) y la dehiscencia anastomótica (1,7%).]
English translation: [As primary surgery, it presents a mortality of a 0.5%] [and a 8.8% of perioperative complications, standing out hemorrhages (4.8%) and dehiscence of anastomosis (1.7%).]
24b. [Kirurgia mota honetan, heriotza tasa % 0,5ekoa da,] [eta ebakuntza osteko arazoak,
berriz, % 8,8koak dira: odoljarioa (% 4,8) eta dehiszentzia anastomotikoa (% 1,7).]
English translation: [In this type of surgery, the mortality rate is 0.5%] [while the perioperative complications are 8.8%: haemorrhages (4.8%) and dehiscence of anastomosis (1.7%).]
The use of the Basque counterargument connector berriz (‘while’) shows a contrast,
not a contradiction. This connector means that A2 labels this passage with a Contrast
relation, while A1 labels the same passage with List relation, because he did not have
any discourse marker.
d) Deleting relative clauses:
25a. [Creemos que es importante dar a nuestros pacientes una información previa a la exploración lo más precisa posible, que sea capaz de resolver todas las posibles dudas que les plantee
y que les permita afrontarla con tranquilidad.]
English translation: [We think that it is important to give our patients a pre-scan information
as accurate as possible, being able to resolve all the possible doubts raised by it and allowing
them to deal with it peacefully.]
25b. [Garrantzitsua iruditzen zaigu azterketa egin baino lehen, gaixoei informazio zehatza
aurreratzea.] [Horrela, bere zalantzak argituz, hobeto egingo diote aurre azterketari.]
English translation: [We think that it is important to give our patients a pre-scan information
as accurate as possible.] [In this way, resolving their doubts, they will deal better with the
medical examination.]
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Table 8. Data of the partial qualitative evaluation
Total relations
Agreement on relations
Disagreements on relations
Translation source
Interpretation source
Absolute data
In this example, the literal translation of the relative clause used in Spanish was avoided in
Basque and it was translated by an independent sentence with a finite verb (aurre egingo
diote [‘(they) will deal with’]).
Once all the cases have been described, we conclude that the use of the detected translation strategies is due to the fact that Basque sentences have the semantic load at the end of
the sentence, since it is an SOV language. In order to facilitate the understanding, the translator has to locate the semantic load earlier in the sentence or has to reduce the size of it. In
this corpus more sentences in Basque than in Spanish were used to facilitate the understanding of the semantic content. Precisely for this reason (to shorten sentences), some
translation strategies were used in Basque. The use of these strategies definitely increases
the linguistic differences that affect the rhetorical structure, changing the relations among
EDUs and, thus, changing sometimes the meaning of the text or, at least, the presentation
of the information. If the meaning of the text is different, it is normal that the disagreement
between the annotators increases and, thanks to the partial qualitative evaluation, this great
increase in the disagreement becomes an indicator of translation techniques.
Table 8 shows the data of the partial qualitative evaluation that we performed in this work.
Finally, Table 9 provides recall and precision of the quantitative evaluations, and
recall of the qualitative evaluation. It is noticed that the precision of both evaluations is
very similar (68.3% in the quantitative evaluation and 71% in the qualitative evaluation).
As it is shown in Table 9, the precision of the qualitative evaluation from the comparison of the 20 rhetorical trees of the corpus is more optimistic than the quantitative
one, but not too much (only 2.7% more). However, this situation is not constant, since in
some trees the difference between evaluations ranges approximately from –10% to +10%.
Although the use of translation strategies definitely affects rhetorical structures, it does
not seem to affect the texts’ superstructure, since both annotators have constructed a very
similar superstructure for both languages. The macrostructure of a text is, according to
van Dijk (1980, 1989), an abstract representation which tends to the overall understanding of the meaning of the text, while the superstructure is the organizational structure of
the text, which can vary depending on the type of the text. Van Dijk (1989) described the
superstructure of various types of texts, for example scientific texts, and he stated that:
En los discursos científicos se presenta una variante especial de las superestructuras argumentativas [. . .]. La estructura básica del discurso científico no (sólo) consiste en una
SOLUCIÓN. (van Dijk, 1989: 164)
English translation: Scientific discourse provides a special variant of argumentative superstructures [. . .]. The basic structure of scientific discourse is not (only) a CONCLUSION and its
JUSTIFICATION, but also a PROBLEM STATEMENT and a SOLUTION. (van Dijk, 1989: 164)
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
Table 9. Final results of quantitative evaluation and
partial qualitative evaluation
68.3 %
For example, van Dijk (1989) analyzed the superstructure of the Experimental Report, finding in it some observations, an explanation, a hypothesis, an experiment, etc. In this work we
also analyze a scientific discourse but, as we have already discussed, our corpus of analysis
includes abstracts of original articles, specifically from the medical field. These abstracts
maintain the same superstructure of the articles that are related to them and, therefore, they
have four main sections: Introduction, Patients and methods, Results and Discussion. This
structure was labeled exactly by both annotators, by means of RST relations as Background,
Means, Result and Interpretation. Figure 6 shows a diagram of this structure.
4. Conclusions
To conclude, we think that this work represents a new contribution concerning RST, since it
extends our understanding about the comparison of rhetorical trees in various languages,
specifically the comparison between Spanish and Basque, that had not been made before. We
have mentioned some problems of quantitative evaluation, and an original qualitative evaluation has also been presented. Our work shows that, though there are differences regarding
rhetorical analysis performed over the same corpus (with parallel texts in two languages) by
two annotators, these are mainly due to the translation strategies being used. However, these
strategies do not affect the superstructure of medical abstracts in a decisive way.
Another conclusion of this work is that translation strategies influence the interpretation of RST rhetorical relations. The translator did sometimes not use the same linguistic
structures when translating from one language into another. Since the rhetorical structures were not maintained, the two annotators of our study interpreted differently a same
passage written in two languages.
Figure 6. Main superstructure labeled by both annotators
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
Likewise, the comparison of rhetorical trees of parallel texts has allowed us to observe
two situations: a) when translating an abstract, its rhetorical structure is not taken into
account as much as its syntactic structure, and b) in the cases where it is not convenient
to translate syntactic structures literally, the used translation strategies provide some
clues about how languages usually structure their discourse (which is an issue to take
into account for automatic translation of rhetorical structures).
As future work, we would like to compare the top spans of rhetorical structures in
order to determine the level of agreement concerning the superstructure, and to analyze the linguistic factors determining the disagreement on rhetorical structure.
Although the abstracts are quite short, we think their length is enough to evaluate the
agreement of the annotators. Furthermore, we would like to study the reasons for the
oscillations between the quantitative and qualitative evaluations, and to also add to
this study a third language, English, since, as we have already mentioned, Gaceta
Médica de Bilbao also includes the abstracts of the authors in that language. We consider that it is important to observe which types of translation strategies have been
used and the existing differences among them. As English and Spanish are linguistically more similar, the applied translation strategies should be reduced and, therefore,
this variable would decrease when comparing closer languages. In addition, we would
like to confirm if medical abstracts in English have the same superstructure. Moreover,
we plan to carry out a compilation of discourse markers in Spanish, Basque and English,
starting from an empirical analysis of medical abstracts written in these three languages.
The main goal of this last study would be to analyze the correlations among rhetorical
relations and discourse markers, in the same way that Iruskieta et al. (in press) have done.
2.The English translation is ours (see
3.The following examples are proposed by Carlson and Marcu (2001).
4.Throughout this article, examples marked with ‘a’ show the segmentation included in Carlson
and Marcu (2001), and examples marked with ‘b’ show the segmentation that we would establish in our work.
5.‘Deficit’ is part of the unit ‘it will be able to halve this year’s 120 billion ruble’.
8.For the purpose of this article, we have tried to do, for the English translation, the EDU
segmentation as similar as possible with regard to the one proposed in Spanish and Basque.
9.Marcu (2000b) names them ‘spans’.
10.Note that numerical elements are included in one column in Table 1, while in Table 3 these
elements are included in the first two.
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Appendix Table 1. Information about the analyzed corpusa
Reference Title
Text 1
L.C. Abecia
Text 2
Text 3
Text 4
Text 5
Pharmacoepidemiologic and
pharmacoeconomic study of arterial
Serious psychomatic criteria in oncology
The ‘basal-like’ (c-erb-B2 -, ER - and
PR - negative) tumour phenotype defines
a biologically highly aggressive subgroup of
surgical pT1 stage breast cancers
Real incidence of axillar nodal invasion in
T1 breast cancer among our population
Prosthetic infection of knee
R. Ruiz, A. Aljelani, U. Shelick, 2007
U. Usobiaga, J. Muro, J. Bilbao,
F. Franco
J. Schneider, A. Tejerina,
C. Perea, A. Tejerina R. Lucas,
J. Sánchez
J. Schneider, A. Tejerina,
J. Sánchez, J. Lucas
O. Sáez-de-Ugarte-Sobrón,
I. Gutiérrez-Sánchez,
A. Cruchaga-Celada,
F. Labayru-Etxebarria,
I. Garcia Sánchez,
A. Álvarez-González
Text 6
Recurrent aphthous stomatitis (I):
A. Eguía, R. Saldón,
Epidemiologic, ethiologic and clinical features J. M. Aguirre
Text 7
The surgery of the carotid bifurcation in
cerebral ischemia of extracranial origin:
A 10 year experience
L. Estallo, A. Barba,
L. Rodríguez, S. Gimena,
A. G. Alfageme
Text 8
Uncommon clinical features in Whipple’s
disease: An assay of four cases
E. Ojeda, A. Cosme, J. Lapaza, 2005
J. Torrado, I. Arruabarrena,
L. Alzate.
Text 9
Evolution of the anthropometric measures
in children’s feet: Correlation indices with
other variables
R. De los Mozos,
A. Alfageme, E. Ayerdi
Text 10
Evolution of the anthropometric measures in R. De los Mozos, A.
children’s feet: A stratified descriptive study
Alfageme, E. Ayerdi
Text 11
Evolution of the anthropometric measures in R. De los Mozos Bozalongo,
children’s feet: An overall descriptive study
A. Alfageme Cruz, E. Ayerdi
Text 12
Stroke acute care and improvement
J. Pérez-de-Arriba,
G. Achutegui, L. Epelde,
G.Viñegra, J.L. Elexpuru.
Text 13
Morbidity and tolerance of the
ultrasound-guided prostatic biopsy
punction in 392 patients
J. A. López-Lendoiro, P. Aísa,
X. Aguirre, E. Añorbe,
M. Paraíso
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
Appendix Table 1. (Continued)
Reference Title
Text 14
Text 15
Text 16
Text 17
Text 18
Text 19
Text 20
Surgical treatment of infantile flexible flan
using the calcaneus-stop technique
I. Etxebarria-Foronda,
I. Garmilla-Iglesias,
A. Gay-Vitoria, J. MolanoMuñoz. D. Izal-Miranda,
E. Esnal-Baza, A. Ruiz-Sánchez.
The profile of the users from the emergency I. Bengoetxea Martínez
department from Galdakao’s Hospital
Fast progression dementia and myoclonus
A, M. J. González-Quintela,
Surgical and ultrasound correlation in full
J. de la Fuente-Ortiz-de-Zárate, 2004
thickness tears of the shoulder rotator cuff J. Kutz-Peyroncelli,
J. L. Imizcoz-Barriola
Surgical treatment for morbid obesity
I. Díez-del-Val, C. Martínez2005
Blázquez,V. Sierra-Esteban,
J. M.Vitores-López,
Progress of patients undergoing
K. Abu-Shams, J. Ardanaz,
collapsotherapy due to pulmonary
M. Murie, A. Sebastián,
G. Tiberio, A. Arteche.
Pseudomonas aeruginosa infectionJ. Garrós Garay, E. Ruiz de
colonization in patients with bronchiectasias Gordejuela, G. Martín Saco,
or COPD. Clinical features, microbiology
L. Gallego, J. Pérez Escajadillo,
and outcome
F. García Cebrián
The titles in English have been extracted from the original articles, except for the titles of texts 7 and 19;
we have translated these from Spanish into English.
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Appendix Table 2. List of relations used in this study following the extended version and with
representative examples in Spanish and Basquea
[Los antecedentes de primer grado se relacionan con un mayor riesgo
de aparición del tumor,]N [mientras que los antecedentes familiares de
segundo grado no influyen de manera importante.]N
[Lehen graduko aurrekariak tumorearen agertze arrisku handiagoekin
lotzen dira;]N [bigarren graduko aurrekari familiarrak, ordea, ez dute modu
garrantzitsuan eragiten]N
[First-degree medical history is associated with an increased risk of
developing the tumour,]N [while second-degree family medical history
did not influence significantly.]N
[En todos los pacientes se realizó un seguimiento radiológico]N [y fueron dados
de alta tras una radiografía del abdomen sin evidencia de cuerpos extraños.]N
[Paziente guztiei erradiologiako jarraipena egin zaie]N [eta gorputz arrotzen
ebidentzia gabeko sabelaldearen erradiografien ostean guztiei alta eman
[All the patients underwent radiological monitoring]N [and were
discharged after a scan of the abdomen without evidence of strange
[El 68% de los pacientes eran varones.]N [El 92% procedían de Colombia.]N
[El 65% ingirieron fármacos antidiarreicos.]N
[Pazienteen % 68a gizonezkoak ziren.]N [% 92ak kolonbiar jatorria zuen.]N
[% 65ak beherakoaren kontrako botika irentsi zuen.]N
[68% of patients were male.]N [92% came from Colombia.]N [65%
ingested anti-diarrhea medication.]N
[A todos ellos se les realizaron una historia clínica y un examen físico.]N
[Se les preguntó por el país de procedencia.]N [Se registraron la frecuencia
cardíaca, la temperatura y la presión arterial.]N
[Horiei guztiei egin zitzaien historia klinikoa eta azterketa fisikoa.]N
[Jatorriko herrialdeaz galdetu zitzaien.]N [Bihotz-maiztasuna, tenperatura
eta presio arteriala erregistratu ziren.]N
[We carried out a medical history and a physical examination to all
of them.]N [We asked them their country of origin.]N [We registered
their heart rate, temperature and blood pressure.]N
[La mayoría de los pacientes que han perdido peso de forma apreciable
roncan menos]N [o han dejado de hacerlo por completo.]N
[Pisua nabarmen galdu duten pazienteen gehiengoak zurrunga gutxiago
egiten dute]N [edo zurrunga egiteari utzi diote]N
[Most of the patients who have lost weight appreciably snore less]N
[or they have stopped completely.]N
[Mendel no sabía que los genes se localizan en cromosomas]N [ni que los genes
localizados uno cerca del otro en el mismo cromosoma se transmiten juntos.]N
[Mendelek ez zekien geneak kromosometan kokatzen zirela]N [ezta
elkarrekin transmititzen zirela ere kromosoma batean bata bestetik hurbil
kokaturiko geneak. ]N
[Mendel did not know that genes are located in chromosomes]N [nor
that genes that are located near each other in the same chromosome
are transmitted together.]N
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
Appendix Table 2. (Continued)
[A los portadores de cuerpos extraños intraabdominales que contienen
cocaína, con fines de contrabando, se les conoce con el síndrome del
body packer.]S [Hemos estudiado la aparición de complicaciones en el
seguimiento de individuos que ingieren estos paquetes de droga, con el fin
de poder dar unas normas de actuación en estos casos.]N
[Kokainadun sabelalde barneko gorputz arrotzen eramaileak, kontrabando
helburudunak, “body packer” sindromea izenaz ezagutzen dira.]S [Droga
pakete hauek irensten dituzten norbanakoen jarraipenean konplikazioen
agerpenak ikertu ditugu.]N
[Persons who transport strange bodies containing cocaine by internal
concealment for smuggling purposes are referred to body packer
syndrome.]S [We have analyzed the monitoring complications of
persons that consume these packets of drug, with the objective of
giving rules of conduct in these cases.]N
[Parece necesario propiciar algún tipo de campaña informativa para
sensibilizar a la población femenina ante el cáncer de mama,]N [mientras
no se diluciden las incógnitas que plantean las costosas campañas de
detección temprana.]S
[Bularreko minbiziaren aurrean beharrezkoa dirudi emakumezko
biztanleriari zuzendutako nolabaiteko informazio-kanpainari bide
ematea,]N [goiz antzemate kanpaina garestien auzia argitzen ez den
bitartean behintzat.]S
[It seems necessary to carry out some sort of information campaign
to sensitize the population to the female breast cancer,]N [until the
factors of costly campaigns of early detection are not adequately
[El porcentaje de curación fue algo menor en los obesos que en los
no obesos,]N [aunque esta diferencia no ha sido estadísticamente
[Sendatze-portzentajea zerbait hobeagoa izan da pertsona gizenetan
ez-gizenetan baino,]N [nahiz eta diferentzia hori ez den estatistikoki
esanguratsua izan.]S
[The cure rate was slightly lower in obese people than in nonobese people,]N [although this difference was not statistically
[A efectos del presente estudio consideramos que ha habido acceso a la
mamografía]N [si la mujer se ha realizado al menos una prueba en los 2
años previos a la realización del estudio.]S
[Ikerketa honen xedeetarako mamografia egin izan dela kontsideratu
dugu]N [baldin eta emakumeak gutxienez froga bat egin izan badu
ikerketa egin baino 2 urte lehenago]S
[In this study, we consider that there has been access to
mammography]N [if the woman has had at least one test in the 2
years preceding the survey.]S
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
Appendix Table 2. (Continued)
[Los pacientes suicidas que padecían una enfermedad orgánica
eran 45.]N [La edad media de estos pacientes fue de 58,3 años
(varones 57,6 años y mujeres 59,2 años) con unos límites de
16 a 90 años.]S
[Gaixotasun organikoa zuten pazienteak 45 izan dira]N [16 eta
90 urte bitarteko paziente hauen bataz besteko adina 58,3
urtekoa izan zen (gizonezkoak 57,6 urte eta emakumezkoak
59,2 urte)]S
[Suicidal patients suffering from organic disease were 45.]N [The
average age of these patients was 58.3 years (men 57.6 years and
women 59.2 years) with a range of 16 to 90 years.]S
[Se realizó cirugía en 7 pacientes (3.3%),]N [en cinco de ellos porque
presentaban obstrucción, en uno por rotura de uno de los paquetes y
en otro por ausencia de progresión de dos de los paquetes que eran de
tamaño superior al resto.]S
[7 pazientengan (% 3,3a) kirurgia burutu zen,]N [haietako bostek
buxadura zutelako, beste bati paketeetako bat apurtu zitzaiolako eta
beste bati handiagoak ziren 2 paketeren kanporaketan garapenik
agertzen ez zelako.]S
[Surgery was performed in 7 patients (3.3%),]N [in five of them
because they had obstruction, in one due to the breakage of one
package and in another one because of lack of progression of two
packages that were larger than the rest.]S
[Para que puedan cumplir su función con eficacia,]S [los SUH precisan
que exista un equilibrio apropiado entre la demanda asistencial y su
capacidad de respuesta.]N
[Eraginkortasunez haren funtzioa bete dezan,]S [SUHak laguntzaeskaeraren eta haren erantzun-gaitasunaren arteko oreka egokia eduki
behar du.]N
[In order to fulfil their role effectively,]S [ED needs a proper balance
between care demand and its responsiveness.]N
[Se incluyeron sólo pacientes que se consideraba que estaban
estables,]N [es decir, que no habían precisado cambiar su medicación
habitual en los últimos 15 días y clínicamente no referían un
empeoramiento importante.]S
[Egonkor zeudela kontsideratzen ziren pazienteak bakarrik sartu
genituen,]N [hau da, azkeneko 15 egunetan ohiko medikazioa
aldatu behar izan ez zutenak eta klinikoki okerrera
egin ez zutenak.]S
[We have included only patients who were considered as stable,]N
[that is, patients who did not need to change their regular
medication in the last 15 days and who reported no significant
worsening clinically.]S
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
Appendix Table 2. (Continued)
[Se practicó una radiografía simple del abdomen en todos los
enfermos.]N [Se observaron cuerpos extraños intra-abdominales
en el 98,6% de los enfermos.]S
[Gaixo guztietan sabelaldearen erradiografia sinplea praktikatu
da.]N [Sabelalde barneko gorputz arrotzak gaixoen % 98,6gan hauteman
[All patients underwent normal radiographs of the abdomen.]N
[Intra-abdominal strange bodies were detected in 98.6% of the
[Se realizó una radiografía simple.]N [También se llevó a cabo una
radiografía combinada mediante varias técnicas.]N [En resumen, se han
aplicado diferentes pruebas radiológicas.]S
[Erradiografia sinplea egin zen.]N [Zenbait teknika bidezko erradiografia
konbinatua ere egin zen.]N [Laburtuz, froga erradiologiako desberdinak
aplikatu izan dira.]S
[A normal X-ray was performed.]N [We also carried out a
combined X-ray by several techniques.]N [In short, we have applied
various radiological tests.]S
[Presentaron datos clínicos de obstrucción intestinal 11 pacientes.]N [En
todos ellos se observaron signos radiológicos de obstrucción.]S
[11 pazienteren hesteetako buxaduraren datu klinikoak aurkeztu
ziren.]N [Horietan guztietan buxaduraren zeinu erradiologiakoak
hauteman ziren.]S
[11 patients presented clinical data of intestinal obstruction.]N
[Radiological signs of obstruction were detected in all of them.]S
[La utilización de técnicas como el lavado gástrico, la endoscopia, la
extracción manual transanal o el uso de laxantes por vía rectal para
intentar extraer los paquetes aumenta el riesgo de rotura de los
mismos,]N [por lo que se desaconseja su uso.]S
[Urdail-garbiketak, endoskopioak, ondeste-bideko eskuzko erauzketak
edo ondeste-bideko laxanteen erabilerak paketeak apurtzeko arriskua
handitzen dute.]N [zeinarengatik ez dira horien erabilera gomendatzen.]S
[The use of techniques such as gastric lavage, endoscopy, manual
transanal removal, or the use of rectal laxatives to try to extract the
packages are factors that increase the risk of breaking them,]N [so
we advise against their use.]S
[Consideramos que el programa tenía cobertura total si incluía a todos
los municipios;]N [si no, la cobertura del programa era considerada
[Programak kobertura osoa zuela kontsideratu dugu herri guztiak
barnean biltzen bazituen;]N [bestela, programaren estaldura partzialtzat
hartu izan da.]S
[We consider that the program had full coverage if it included all
municipalities;]N [if not, the program’s coverage was considered as
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
Appendix Table 2. (Continued)
[Uno de los factores que se asocian al suicidio es, precisamente, la
enfermedad física.]N [Sin embargo, la existencia de una enfermedad física
no constituye una evidencia incontrovertible de que éste sea el factor
único, ni siquiera el más importante, en determinar el acto suicida.]S
[Buru-hiltzeari lotutako eragile bat, hain zuzen ere, gaixotasun fisikoa
izaten da.]N [Hala ere, gaixotasun fisikoa ez da ez halabeharrezko
arrazoia ez faktore bakarra, ezta garrantzitsuena ere buru-hiltzearen
ekintza determinatzeko.]S
[One of the factors that is associated with suicide is precisely the
physical illness.]N [However, the existence of a physical illness is not
an incontrovertible proof that this is the only factor, nor even the
most important, for determining the suicidal act.]S
[Al paciente no solo se le ha de diagnosticar y tratar la infección.]N [Es
necesario ofrecerle pautas para que dicha infección no vuelva a aparecer.]S
[Pazienteari diagnostikatzea eta infekzioa tratatzea ez da nahikoa.]N
[Beharrezkoa da jarraibideak eskaintzea infekzioa berriz ager ez dadin.]S
[It is not enough to diagnose and treat the infection of
patients.]N [It is necessary to offer them guidelines in order to avoid
the reappearance of this infection.]S
[La psiconeuroinmunología es un nuevo campo de la ciencia que está
emergiendo]N [debido a un número cada vez mayor de datos que
demuestran interrelaciones entre funciones inmunes y psiconeurales.]S
[Psikoneuroinmunologia garatzen ari den zientziaren eremu berria da.]N
[Izan ere, gero eta datu gehiagok frogatzen dute funtzio immuneen eta
psikoneuralen arteko erlazioak.]S
[Psychoneuroimmunology is a new field of science that is emerging]N
[due to an increasing number of data that show interrelationships
between immune functions and psychoneural functions.]S
[Hay trabajos que demuestran una mejoría en la distancia recorrida en la
prueba de marcha debido al aprendizaje, sobre todo cuando las pruebas se
repiten en un corto espacio de tiempo.]N [Teniendo esto en cuenta, puede
considerarse que las pruebas de marcha son adecuadas para este tipo de
estudios y reflejan el esfuerzo que el paciente hará en la vida cotidiana.]S
[Ikasketaren ondorioz ibilketa-proban ibilitako distantzian hobekuntza
frogatzen duten lanak daude, batez ere denbora laburrean errepikatzen
diren frogetan.]N [Hau kontuan izanik, pentsa daiteke ibilketa-probak
ikasketa tipo hauentzat egokiak direla eta pazienteak eguneroko bizitzan
egingo duen ahalegina erakusten dutela.]S
[There are works that show that there is an improvement regarding
the distance that is covered in walking tests due to a learning
process, especially when the tests are repeated in a short space
of time.]N [Bearing this in mind, we consider that walking tests
are adequate for this type of study and they show the effort that
patients would make in their daily living.]S
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da Cunha and Iruskieta
Appendix Table 2. (Continued)
[En contraste con las numerosas propuestas terapéuticas, sorprende
que la pérdida de peso, mediante una dieta alimentaria hipocalórica,
aparezca en un segundo o tercer plano y sean muy escasas las
publicaciones dedicadas, exclusivamente, a los resultados de la misma,
máxime cuando la gran mayoría de los pacientes son obesos.]S [Por este
motivo, nos hemos decidido a comunicar nuestra experiencia con
la dieta hipocalórica como tratamiento único en pacientes afectos de
Makina bat proposamen terapeutikorekin kontrastean, harrigarria da
dieta hipokalorikoa bigarren edo hirugarren maila batean agertzea eta
hain publikazio gutxi egotea proposamen horien datuei buruz; batez ere
pazienteen gehiengoa pertsona gizenak direnean.]S [Zio horregatik, dieta
hipokalorikoa tratamendu bakar gisa OSAS duten pazienteentzat izan
dugun esperientzia komunikatzea erabaki dugu.]N
[In contrast to the many therapeutic proposals, it is surprising that
weight loss, by a hypocaloric diet, appears in second or third place
and that there are very few publications dealing exclusively with its
results, especially since most of the patients are obese.]S [For this
reason, we have decided to report our experience with hypocaloric
diet as monotherapy in patients with OSAS.]N
[Pacientes y métodos.]S [Los 257 pacientes estudiados constituyen el
5% seleccionado de un total de 4.850 que se visitaron en la unidad
de interconsulta psiquiátrica del Hospital Clínic i Provincial (HCP) de
Barcelona desde junio de 1984 a junio de 1990.]N
[Pazienteak eta metodoak.]S [1984ko ekainetik 1990eko ekainerarte
Bartzelonako Hospital Clínic i Provincial (HCP) psikiatria sail arteko
unitatean bisitatu ziren 4.850 pazientetik % 5 osatzen dute azterturiko
257 pazienteak.]N
[Patients and methods.]S [The 257 studied patients constitute the
5% of 4850 that visited the consultation-liaison psychiatry unit of the
Hospital Clinic i Provincial (HCP) in Barcelona from June 1984 to
June 1990.]N
[Además de los problemas de infraestructura y de su mayor coste otro
inconveniente de las fuentes portátiles es su corta autonomía.]N [En este
sentido, se han diseñado diversos dispositivos destinados a economizar
oxígeno manteniendo un aporte de gas suficiente.]S
[Azpiegitura arazoez eta hauen kosteez gain iturri eramangarrien beste
eragozpen bat autonomia eskasia da.]N [Hori dela eta, gas hornikuntza
nahikoa mantentzen duten oxigenoa aurrezteko zenbait gailu diseinatu
[In addition to infrastructure problems and their greater cost, another
disadvantage of portable sources is their short autonomy.]N [In that
sense, various devices have been designed to save oxygen and
maintain an adequate gas supply.]S
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Discourse Studies 12(5)
Appendix Table 2. (Continued)
[Las tasas de mortalidad por muerte cardíaca súbita pueden reducirse,]N
[entre otros factores, por la correcta identificación de los pacientes con
riesgo de sufrirla, por la rapidez con que se realicen las maniobras de
reanimación y por la calidad del traslado a centros especializados.]S
[Bat-bateko heriotza kardiakoaren heriotza-tasak murritz
daitezke,]N [beste faktore batzuen artean, sufritzeko arriskua duten
pazienteen identifikazio zehatzari esker, suspertze eragiketak buruturiko
bizkortasunari esker eta gune espezializatuetarako lekualdaketa
kalitateari esker.]S
[Mortality rates due to sudden cardiac death can be reduced,]N
[among other factors, by the correct identification of patients at
risk of suffering it, by the speed of the resuscitation and by the
quality of the move to specialized centers.]S
[Parece que la administración de este medicamento tiene efectos
adversos,]N [aun incluso si se administra la dosis mínima.]S
[Botika hau hartzeak aurkako eraginak dituela dirudi,]N [nahiz eta dosi
txikiena emanda ere.]S
[It seems that the administration of this drug has adverse effects]N
[even if the minimum dose is given.]S
[Los terapeutas deben admitir a cualquier paciente en el grupo,]N [a
no ser que éste presente signos claros de actitud violenta que puedan
perjudicar el correcto desarrollo de la terapia.]S
[Terapeutek edozein paziente onartu behar dute taldean,]N [non eta
honen jarrera bortitzak ez duen terapiaren garapen zuzena kaltetzen.]S
[Therapists must accept any patient in the group]N [unless he
presents clear signs of violent behaviour that could harm the
therapy success.]S
In the second column, ‘S’ means Spanish, ‘B’ means Basque and ‘E’ means English.
Iria da Cunha Fanego holds a Hispanic Philology degree at the University of Santiago de
Compostela, Spain and a PhD on Applied Linguistics at the Pompeu Fabra University
(UPF), Spain. She was Assistant Professor at the UPF and researcher of the Institute for
Applied Linguistics until 2008. At present, she holds a postdoctoral grant awarded by the
Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation to work at the Laboratoire Informatique
d’Avignon, France. Her research fields are automatic summarization, discourse parsing
and analysis of specialized discourse.
Mikel Iruskieta holds a Basque Philology degree at the University of the Basque Country
(UPV/EHU). Since 2004, he has been a member of the IXA Research Group (Natural
Language Processing Group) at the Faculty of Informatics (UPV/EHU), where he is
doing a PhD on Applied Linguistics. He has also been professor of Basque at the same
university since 2008. His research fields are semantic, syntactic and discourse parsing,
and development of linguistic resources for Basque.
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