Regional studies

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The article contains information on both regional studies and translation studies .

The geography is a typical German-language research tradition, dedicated to the exploration of a country, a region involved or locality in historical, economic, social and cultural terms. Regional studies require the cooperation of several disciplines of geography and neighboring areas, especially history , and, used as an educational tool, promotes national awareness and federal thinking. Regional studies include sub-disciplines such as applied geography , regional history , cultural area research , folklore , economic geography ,Dialectology and Archeology .

In translation studies , social and cultural characteristics of a country are also referred to as realities .

Local lore

In the elementary school , the pupils are familiarized with their immediate home environment in the subject of local studies or material lessons . You will learn both geographic and historical facts about the city or municipality , your own district and the state in which you live.

Foreign language teaching

In foreign language classes, cultural studies are understood to mean conveying cultural and material background information about the country or region whose language is being learned. Regional information is used in foreign language textbooks as a vehicle for language teaching. One of the tasks of the teacher is to provide the learners with background information about the respective target language country.


At universities, a certain amount of time is often planned for foreign languages ​​as part of an editing session for the respective regional studies. Studying philology usually also requires attending academic courses in regional studies with different thematic focuses (such as the political system, art history , religion or sociology ) along with excursions. Studying translation studies requires a stay of several months in the country concerned.

Translation of realities

These not only bother the translator of literature, but not infrequently also the ordinary citizen; because we often find something in the other country that doesn't exist in our country and for which we therefore don't have an equivalent expression in our own language. We already notice this in foreign language lessons when we are supposed to talk about our school system or our administrative system in the foreign language, for example . Since both systems often differ considerably from ours in other places, we naturally cannot find adequate words. Those words that denotatively mean the same thing are often used differently on the connotative level.

  • For example, For example, the Czech základní škola eight or nine years of school today, while the German - purely linguistic - equivalent elementary school only includes the first four (in some federal states also six) school years.
  • How can you translate the registration office into English when you don't even know such an authority in English-speaking countries?
  • The well-known Czech baked goods rohlík is a croissant in terms of its linguistic meaning , but it differs from the croissant that you could buy in German bakeries in that it is not made of sweet dough. Today, many bakeries have croissants that are not made from sweet dough.

Not only facts of the physical world are affected by this lack of bijectivity in natural languages; Even abstract ideas, idioms or conceptual associations that are a matter of course for a native speaker of the original language can appear strange when translated into the target language, be incomprehensible or be understood in a meaning other than the desired one. By participating in the culture of the target language, translators can gain experience that will help them avoid such mistakes.

See also


  • Homolková, Božena: Reálie německy mluvících zemí. Past and present of the German-speaking countries. Fraus, Plzeň ³2005. ISBN 80-7238-329-9
  • Paoletti, Michel / Ross Steele: Civilization Française Quotidienne. Hatier, Paris 1986. ISBN 2-218-07393-5
  • Pütz, Wolfgang: Between realism and intercultural learning. On the topicality of the concept of regional studies in foreign language didactics. french today 29 (1998), pp. 352-358.
  • Tellinger, Dušan: Cultural Aspects of Specialized Translations (Using Realien as an Example). In: Sborník příspěvků z konference Profilingua 2003. Dobrá Voda, Vydavatelství a nakladatelství Aleš Čeněk 2003, pp. 309–314. ISBN 80-86473-59-7
  • Tellinger, Dušan: Cultural competence of the translator of literary and technical translation. In: German with all the senses. Zborník príspevkov zo VI. konferencie Spoločnosti učiteľov nemeckého jazyka a germanistov Slovenska. Košice, Technická univerzita 2003, pp. 272–275. ISBN 80-88922-72-0
  • Tellinger, Dušan: Realities in translator training (from the perspective of specialist translation). In: Lingua Germanica. 16.-18. September 2004. Plzeň, Vydavatelství a nakladatelství Aleš Čeněk 2005, pp. 130–135.
  • Tellinger, Dušan: Schiller's drama “Demetrius” and the problem of translating realities. In: German Didactics and Germanic Literature Studies in East Central Europe. Contributions to the international Germanist conference "Kontaktsprache Deutsch IV" in Nitra, 19. – 20. Oct. 2001. Vienna, Edition Praesens 2002, pp. 167–172. ISBN 3-7069-0173-0