Chapter 1. Contracts. General characteristics and types
1. English of documents’ writing
2. Theoretical problems of the language of documents
3. The structure of contract and its essential clauses
4. Types of contracts. Abbreviation
Chapter 2. Linguistic peculiarities of contract
2.1. Contract as a type of text and its stylistic characteristics
2.2. Grammatical peculiarities of contract
2.3. Lexical peculiarities of contract
The interest to the problem of drawing up contracts is not occasional. Nowadays more and more people are getting involved in the world of business relationships. As a result of it, business people need specialists possessing knowledge of the English language used for writing documents.
Any serious deal should be struck with the help of contracts and agreements. A written form of agreements is a guarantee that different people, for example Buyers and Sellers, will cooperate in accordance with a certain business strategy, and their interests will be taken into consideration by their partners.
A contract makes clear such things as quantity and quality of goods, their prices, delivery terms, order of payment, and other terms. Contract serves to make a business operation smooth and logic.
It also proves seriousness of contracting parties and defines their responsibilities before each other. An honest word of a businessman, as well, should be reflected in a contract of a different kind. It is called intentions agreement and is a manifestation of a wish to do business. That is, every step and stage of a business deal should be supported in a legal way, in an official form.
The chosen problem has appeared to be very urgent, because linguistics lacks its precise description. There is a clear-cut between formal and informal styles of English, but there is no strict difference between spoken and written business English. Obviously, businessmen do not communicate with their companions using intricate phrases and bookish words. Still, they are obliged to use some formal clichйs which may sound strange to non-business people, but are essential for conducting business. Anyway, in the research we have been trying to investigate the written part of business procedure, and to analyse texts of contracts considering their specific peculiarities.
Another thing to be mentioned is that there are very few scientific researches devoted to the problem of drawing up business documents. As a result of it, theory of writing business papers, on the one hand, reflects highly subjective approaches. On the other hand, such approaches are not unified in accordance with existing rules of formal
English which is also greatly influenced by informal English. Such influence really exists, but there are no accepted criteria about what changes should be taken into consideration. That is why people who draw up contracts suffer quite understandable problems: How should they do it to sound correct in the foreign language? To what degree should they be formal in the text of contract, if even English- speaking people meet difficulties of a special kind in drawing a line between formal and informal English? However, these problems are side problems of making up contracts here.
The object of the research, thus, is a contract as a part of a business deal and a type of written business English. Its subject comprises investigation of linguistic peculiarities of a contract which make technique of its writing obligatory for people involved in drawing up business documents.
The purpose of the research is to investigate peculiarities in texts of contracts. It is performed through comprehension, interpretation and analysis of contractual essential clauses, all of them illustrated by examples from texts of contracts.
The solution of the aim claims for doing away with a number of certain tasks, such as:
1. to point out main features of formal English as the language of business correspondence;
2. to describe the structure of contract and to single out its main clauses which are characteristic of this type of documents;
3. to expose peculiarities of contract dividing them into three general groups of stylistic, grammatical and lexical peculiarities.
In order to solve these tasks the author of the research has used methods of studying and analysis of theoretical literature and practical manuals on the problem; the methods of observation, description, means of syntactic and semantic analyses.
The research has been performed in four interrelated steps.
Analysis of literature on the problem has logically been the first stage. After it, theoretical basis of the research has been compiled.