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The lacuna model is a tool for unlocking culture differences or missing "gaps" in text (in the further meaning). The lacuna model was established as a theory by Jurij Sorokin and Irina Markovina (Russia), further developed by Astrid Ertelt-Vieth and Hartmut Schröder (Germany) and practical research tested in ethnopsycholinguistics (Igor Panasiuk 2000 and 2005), Russian studies (Vladimir Zhelvis 2002; Astrid Ertelt-Vieth 1987; 2005), American studies (Iosif Sternin and Marina Sternina 2001), Arabic studies (Sherine Elsayed 2005), Germanics studies (Elena Denisova-Schmidt 2005), Finnish studies (Pirkko Muikku-Werner 2005), literature studies (Irina Markovina 2005), foreign language acquisition (Natalia Turunen 2005), film studies (Hannah Sard 2005), journalism (B. Dellinger 1995; Myles Ludwig and Erika Grodzki 2005), translation studies (Susanne Becker 2005), cultural studies (Gwenn Gundula Hiller 2005), advertising research (Erika Grodzki 2003), and human resource management (Mariola Kaplanek 2005).
There are a few classifications of lacunas in existence. Astrid Ertelt-Vieth (2005) labels the first dimension (three major categories as: mental lacunas, activity lacunas and object lacunas) and the second dimension (axiological lacunas) of all lacunas.
- Mental lacunas are differences in cognitive and affective states.
- Lacunas of activity recognize different ways of processing information, talking, moving, as well as other activities.
- Object lacunas are the differences in objects, the human body, and the environment.
- Axiological lacunas are cultural based meaning/understanding of all mentioned above lacunas.
All lacunas could be confrontative, contrastive, implicit, explicit, relative, profound, absolute, relational and structural.