An investigation of how 100 articles in the Journal of Pragmatics treat transcripts of English and non-English languages

Maria Egbert, Mamiko Yufu, Fumiya Hirataka

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Citations (Scopus)


In pragmatics, as in all sciences, English has become the lingua franca of international publication. The impacts of this state on pragmatics research are examined based on a meta-study of 100 recent articles with transcripts of audio- or video-taped social interaction, published in the Journal of Pragmatics (JoP).The study shows a differential treatment of English and non-English data. 45% of the articles which handle only English data do not refer to the studied language at all. In contrast, 94% of the authors publishing on non-English data signify the language. There is great variety in the degree to which non-English data is accessible, and there are almost as many different types of transcripts of non-English data as there are articles. Much of the real-life variety of non-English language use is lost in the data displays, and the original is not sufficiently accessible to allow for independent analysis, as it would be if the data were in English. Only scant reflection of the choices are offered. The article concludes that there is a need to increase scientific precision, accessibility of non-English data, readability and practicality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98-111
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Pragmatics
Publication statusPublished - 2016 Mar 1



  • English as a lingua franca
  • Glossing
  • Methodology
  • Non-English transcripts
  • Translation
  • Transliteration

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Linguistics and Language

Cite this