Respekt for den juridiske term og dens begrebsindhold: En diskussion af ækvivalens og strategier for juridisk oversættelse på baggrund af en terminologisk undersøgelse af udvalgte termer inden for virksomhedspant og floating charge

Li Bjørnskov Fischer

Student thesis: Master thesis

Abstract

Respecting legal terms and their intension: A discussion of equivalence and legal translation strategies on the basis of a terminological and conceptual analysis of selected Danish and English floating charge terms. Perhaps now more than ever, legal translation scholars and theorists discuss whether a literal or a free approach to legal translation is the most respectful way to translate intricate and complex national legal cultures and traditions in such a manner that the receiver of the target text is able to comprehend the legal concepts of the source text, thus eliminating misinterpretations that ultimately can result in litigation. Focusing on legal terminology and conceptual equivalence, this thesis sets out to discuss equivalence theory, terminological methodology and free vs. literal translation strategies in the realm of legal translation, with Danish floating charges as the terminological case of investigation. ’Virksomhedspant’ (floating company charge) was introduced to Danish law in 2006. As the new legislation in part was inspirationally influenced from the more than 150-year-old English floating charge system, the Danish terminology is expected to include terms with both a high and a low degree of equivalence with the English terms. After establishing the theoretical equivalence paradigm (natural vs. directional equivalence and Šarčević’s equivalence categories) in which this thesis operates, and examining the triadic notion of reference in relation to the conceptuality of legal terminology, a comparative analysis based on comparative law methodology was carried out on the Danish and English legal areas of floating charge. 10 Danish terms with expected partial or non-equivalence with their English counterparts and one term with expected near equivalence with its English counterpart were selected for further terminological analysis. Utilising conceptual system methodology and terminography (creating definitions by establishing the conceptual characteristics of a term), the degrees of equivalence between the 11 selected Danish terms and their English counterparts were assessed and categorised. It was found that the majority of the Danish terms had a partial equivalent in English, at least to some extent, but that the utilisation of these was questionable as their conceptual values depended on the context of the source text. Following a discussion of current legal translation theory and my own pragmatic observations of legal translation, a presentation of the constituents of a functional equivalent and a selection of relevant micro strategies for legal translation, I suggest several translation alternatives for the 11 terms with the aim of reaching a level of functional and acceptable equivalence between source and target terms.

EducationsMA in International Business Communication (Intercultural Marketing), (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
LanguageDanish
Publication date2014
Number of pages105