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Legilinguistic Translatology

A Parametric Approach to Legal Translation

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Aleksandra Matulewska

With the purpose of making the process of legal translation accessible to investigation, the author resorts to the parametrization of translational reality as an inalienable component of her translational theory being proposed here for consideration. The aim is to propose a more precise theory of legilinguistic translation which compels the author to clearly distinguish primitive terms and postulates. These latter specify the image (model) of the reality in question in terms of relevant dimensions used to characterize a set of translational objects and relations. The dimensions secure a systematic examination of the translation reality and process. In order to illustrate the practical application of the parametrization in legal translation, the discussion concerning this translation approach is limited to certain selected types of legal communicative communities which is amply exemplified. The research is based on data and information gathered during an in-depth case study of translations and parallel text corpora mainly in the field of civil law including insolvency and bankruptcy law.

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2. Legilinguistic Translatology - 51

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2. Legilinguistic Translatology12 2.1. Introductory remarks on translatology For a very long time translation was considered to be a practical action only. Translatology as a discipline was not considered a science. This approach changed with the emergence of the linguistic trend in transla- tion studies (Jakobson 1959, Nida 1964, etc.). Right now translation studies are a subdiscipline of applied linguistics, with the research do- main of translation studies (also called translatology) being translational reality. In the past, translators mainly focused on translative texts but the development of translational theories brought to our attention also other important objects of this reality which is now acknowledged to comprise not only translative texts but also translandive texts, the author of the translandive text, translators, their actions as well as other entities pertinent to the translation process (e.g. the commissioner mentioned for the first time by Vermeer or recipients of a translative text for whom Luther consciously adapted his translation of the Bible). Additionally, it should be borne in mind that the hierarchy of objects may depend on the type of translation and translational situation as translation is the process of ensuring interhuman communication (cf. Popovič 1977, Hatim 1997 (2001a), Tabakowska 1993, 1999, 2001, 2009, Kielar/Lewandowska 1999, Kierzkowska 2002, etc.), which should be effective. Therefore, the effectivity of translation is also a very important factor, which is dependent among others upon the quality of translation. To be more explicit, translation may be divided into: (i) translatology, or in other words a theory of translation...

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