Contractions: To Align or Not to Align, That Is the Question

Anabela Barreiro, Fernando Batista


Abstract
This paper performs a detailed analysis on the alignment of Portuguese contractions, based on a previously aligned bilingual corpus. The alignment task was performed manually in a subset of the English-Portuguese CLUE4Translation Alignment Collection. The initial parallel corpus was pre-processed and, a decision was made as to whether the contraction should be maintained or decomposed in the alignment. Decomposition was required in the cases in which the two words that have been concatenated, i.e., the preposition and the determiner or pronoun, go in two separate translation alignment pairs (e.g., [no seio de] [a União Europeia] | [within] [the European Union]). Most contractions required decomposition in contexts where they are positioned at the end of a multiword unit. On the other hand, contractions tend to be maintained when they occur in the beginning or in the middle of the multiword unit, i.e., in the frozen part of the multiword (e.g., [no que diz respeito a] | [with regard to] or [além disso] [in addition]. A correct alignment of multiwords and phrasal units containing contractions is instrumental for machine translation, paraphrasing, and variety adaptation.
Anthology ID:
W18-3816
Volume:
Proceedings of the First Workshop on Linguistic Resources for Natural Language Processing
Month:
August
Year:
2018
Address:
Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA
Venues:
COLING | LR4NLP | WS
SIG:
Publisher:
Association for Computational Linguistics
Note:
Pages:
122–130
Language:
URL:
https://www.aclweb.org/anthology/W18-3816
DOI:
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PDF:
http://aclanthology.lst.uni-saarland.de/W18-3816.pdf