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Legilinguistic Translatology

A Parametric Approach to Legal Translation


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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3. Towards Parametrization of Translatology - 107


3. Towards Parametrization of Translation 3.1. Introductory remarks on relevant dimensions The parametrization of the translation process will be achieved by establishing relevant dimensions. The dimensions presented in this work will thus be called legal translation relevant dimensions and they will be grouped in five categories of dimensions being: (i) source-text author, (ii) translandum, translatum, and text component parts, (iii) commission and commissioner, (iv) translator, and (v) communicative community. Consequently, each category is composed of a few dimensions. Each dimension is a set of homogenous properties called dimension proper- ties, which indicates that the properties are of the same type and there- fore are comparable and simultaneously mutually exclusive – thus the object can take on only one property from each dimension. Neither the list of categories nor the list of dimensions pre- sented below is exhaustive. In certain instances other types of catego- ries and dimensions may be established as expedient to carry out translation action successfully. Furthermore it should be stressed once again that the dimen- sions presented below have been established for the purpose of legal translation. Therefore, some of the dimensions may be applicable solely to legal communication. However, the concept of parametriza- tion of the legal translation process may be adapted to any type of translation. Properties from each dimension serve the purpose of character- izing the objects existing in the legal communication space. In other words, characterization is the operation of association of properties from specific dimensions to a specific object in legal communication. 108...

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