Date of Award

8-1-2013

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Applied Linguistics

First Advisor

Gault, Thomas

Abstract

This study examined the attitudes of foreigners towards inaccurately-translated signs in China. Three categories of signs were explored, including menus, restaurants' names and product labels. The researcher studied foreigners' reactions when they saw inaccurately-translated signs, the foreigners' preferences toward the bilingual signs and the factors that probably affect foreigners' perspectives on the bilingual signs. The instrument was a questionnaire, with questions about participants' backgrounds and attitudes towards bilingual signs in China. The data was analyzed through descriptive, inferential, and content analyses. The results of the study showed that the participants' Chinese-culture backgrounds most affected their attitudes toward signs most--the participants who had more Chinese background had more willingness to accept inaccurately-translated English on signs. The English translation affected the participants' choices--better English translation could attract more customers. Otherwise, the factor of design and the quality of pictures affected the participants' choices as well.

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