Compound Nouns in Vietnamese and English Commercial Texts
A Contrastive Analysis
Learning has always been a challenging process to obtain knowledge. This is undeniably true in studying economics in a different language. The quest to understand a concept itself may present some difficulties. Yet, comprehending the wordings that may lead to such understanding can also be overly frustrating. Through reading some economic magazines and essays, the author notes that there are many strange compound nouns whose meanings can only be revealed by careful examining the contexts they are in. In this paper, the author attempts to analyze the meanings of some strange English compound nouns in some particular contexts, followed by comparisons and contrast analyses with regards to Vietnamese compound nouns. The purpose of this paper is to give learners a general view of the difference in the two languages’ compound nouns so that it may be useful in expanding one’s vocabulary.
Compound nouns in Vietnamese and English commercial texts
Overview of compound nouns
Compound nouns are ranked as a productive language in our modern society now. They frequently appear in many articles, magazines, and books. Nevertheless, they are quite difficult for non-native speakers. Compound nouns themselves have always been making learners quite frustrated such as “brother-in-law”, “up-to-the minute”, “two-hour flight,” or “Vietnamese-American”. To understand the structure and the meanings of these words, students have to learn by hearts when they meet these complicated words, especially in many English commercial texts. Compound words in special subjects are even more difficult to grasp. For the learners studying economics whose English is not their mother tongue, contextual comprehension is really a tough problem. They often have limited knowledge of these words. As a result, I decided to do a research about the morphological and semantic features of compound words as well as compound nouns in some commercial texts in order to give learners some general understanding about some typical English words. Morphological and semantic features of compound nouns in Vietnamese and English commercial texts Definition of compound nouns in English
According to Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary, “a compound word is a noun, an adjective, or a verb made of two or more words or parts of words, written as one or more words, or joined by a hyphen”(OU,2010). In addition, a compound noun is a noun composed of two or more words that are used together to form a single noun, for instance: chopstick, football, up-bringing... We have various types of compound nouns as their structures are quite complex. Another definition of this type in Cambridge Grammar of English is: "The compound noun structure is extremely varied in the types of meaning relations it can indicate. It can be used to indicate what someone does (language teacher), what something is for (waste-paper basket, grindstone), what the qualities of something are (whiteboard), how something works (immersion heater), when something happens (night frost), where something is (doormat), what something is made of (woodpile), and so on." (Carter and McCarthy, 2006) Generally, I would like to list some basic structures of noun compounding methods below: Noun + Noun
Verb + Noun
Preposition + Noun
However, in some texts writing about economics, there are some nouns compounded from different morphological and semantic features. When someone reads many articles about business, finance, or accounting, they may have to deal with many strange compound nouns such as “me-too product”, “bail-out”, or “big gun”... These words have no certain so-called ‘root’ words and you may consult a dictionary to get the correct meaning. Thus, in this essay, I want to discuss some special compound nouns in...