What makes legal translation special in comparison to other forms of translation? This question is highly relevant both to the legal translator and for translation theory as such. This paper discusses legal translation and it´s characteristics, especially the characteristics of the translation of laws as authentic legal texts. Legal translation is a highly specialized form of translation. Some researchers have claimed that legal translation should be seen as a category of its own in translation studies, and some overviews of the research field of translation studies do discuss legal translation as a separate category. Some of the reasons mentioned by these scholars and which are discussed in this paper are the concept of legal equivalence, the demand of same effect of source and target text, the institutional translation process for legal translation and different target readers of the text. These combined create a very complex set of norms, which require the legal translator not only to have a very good knowledge of the legal genre and its institutional production setting, but also involves e.g. risk-analysis when choosing how and for whom to translate. The paper is given a Finnish-Swedish framework. Examples from empirical studies on the Swedish legal language in Finland and the translation of the laws of Finland from Finnish into Swedish highlight and confirm the theoretical discussions and conclusions in the article. In Finland all government proposals are presented to the Government in both national languages, Finnish and Swedish. In practice however, almost all laws in present-day Finland are drafted in Finnish and translated into Swedish.
|Journal||Folkmålsstudier : Meddelanden från Föreningen för Nordisk Filologi|
|Number of pages||26|
|Publication status||Published - Jun 2015|
|MoE publication type||A1 Journal article-refereed|
Fields of Science
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