Language as a whole is a complex vehicle of communication and may become a crucial factor for individuals to live in harmony. In this light, clarity in communication represents an essential means of democracy, equality and respect. Everyone should have the right to access information, particularly in those fields affecting their daily lives. However, as argued by Castorina and Gagliardi (2008), in many cases this seems to be impracticable due to “pompous, hard, foggy words and phrases”. As a result, some questions arise: have we got a right to a clear and understandable language? What is the appropriate way to achieve it? Could this kind of language really improve communication? This paper aims to address these questions by taking into account the principles of the Plain Language Movement and the Fight the FOG campaign of the European Commission, and the relevant views of some of the most important experts in the field, such as Joseph Kimble and Emma Wagner. In particular, the paper analyzes an excerpt from an information booklet for refugees and asylum seekers issued by the Italian Ministry of the Interior, and provides an English version of the text complying with the plain language principles to fight the fog of “bureaucratese” in daily communication, thus differing, to my knowledge, from other studies on plain language – mostly concentrated on the analysis of administrative and legal documents. The resulting text in plain language proves to be valuable in terms of intelligibility, conciseness and straightforwardness of content.
|Titolo:||Plain Language Communication for Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Italy: Language Improvement or Linguicide?|
TAGLIALATELA, ANTONIO [Membro del Collaboration Group] (Corresponding)
|Data di pubblicazione:||2015|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||2.1 Contributo in volume (Capitolo o Saggio)|