Legal Translation Explained

A few days ago I realized that I hadn’t included a book review for quite a while. Although this book was published in 2002, it is still really useful, and as far as I can tell, about the only one on the market to be such a comprehensive theoretical reference whilst being totally accessible and clearly written. When I read it, I gobbled it down in just a couple of days. It covers English, Spanish, French and German, but would probably also be of use to people working from other languages into English.

This is what the publisher, St Jerome, has to say: “The scope of the book makes it useful not only for would-be translators, but also as a reference source to anyone with a background in any of the languages used in the book, who would find the explanations and glossed terminology an aid to becoming familiar with the English legal system and vocabulary. It could also serve as a basic introductory text to anyone with an interest in legal English. (Lucy Cox, International Journal of Legal Information)

Here is a link to the publisher’s contents page so you can see whether it might be of use to you.

6 thoughts on “Legal Translation Explained

  1. Here are a few more titles:

    Comparative Legal Linguistics. Heikki E.S. Mattila. Ashgate Publishing House, Hampshire, (2006). ISBN-10: 0 7546 4874 5 / ISBN-13: 978-0-7546-4874-1.
    *English as a Legal Language. Christine Rossini. Kluwer Law International (2d. ed. 1998). ISBN: 90-411-9680-3.
    *Language and the Search for Clarity: Practice and Tools. Anne Wagner and Sophie Cacciaguidi-Fahy (eds.). Peter Lang AG (2006). ISSN: 1424-8689 / ISBN 3-03911-169-8 / US ISBN: 0-8204-8388-5.
    Language and Translation in International Commercial Arbitration. Tibor Várady. T-M-C Asser Press (2006). ISBN 10: 90-6704-233-1 / ISBN 13: 978-09-6704-233-8.
    *Language as a Special Language: Structural Features of English Legal Language. Gaby Schneidereit. GRIN Verlag (2004). ISBN 978-3-638-65449-4.
    *Language in the Legal Process. Janet Cotterill (ed.). Palgrave Macmillan (2002). ISBN: 0-333-96902-2.
    *Legal English. Rupert Haigh. Routledge-Cavendish (2d. ed. 2009). ISBN: 0-203-87796-9 (Master eBook) / ISBN 10: 0-415-48715-3 / ISBN 13: 978-0-415-4871-3.
    Legal Language. Peter M. Tiersma. University of Chicago Press (1999). ISBN-13: 978-0-226-80303-6 / IBSN-10: 0-226-80303-1.
    Linguistic Battles in Trademark Disputes. Roger Shuy. Palgrave Macmillan (2002). ISBN 0-333-99758-1.
    New Approach to Legal Translation. Susan Šarčevic. Kluwer Law International (1997). ISBN: 90-411-0401-1.
    *Researching Language and the Law: Textual Features and Translation Issues. Dvide S. Giannoni, Celina Frade (eds.). Peter Lang (2010). ISBN: 978-3-0343-0443-6.
    *Semantic Processing of Legal Texts: Where the Language of Law Meets the Law of Language. Enrico Francesconi, Simonetta Montemagni, Wim Peters, Daniela Tiscornia (eds.). Springer Berlin Heidelberg (2010). ISSN: 0302-9743 / ISBN 10: 3-642-12836-X / ISBN 13: 978-642-12836-3.
    Translation and the Law. American Translators Association Scholarly Monograph Series. Volume VIII 1995. Marshall Morris, ed. John Benjamins Publishing Company/Binghamton University (1995). ISBN 1-55619-627-X (USA).
    Translation Issues in Language and Law. Frances Olsen, Alexander Lorz and Dieter Stein, eds. Palgrave Macmillan (2009). ISBN: 978-0-230-20350-1.

    Personally, I think that someone still needs to put together a good treatise on the topic.

    • Hi Stephen! Very nice to hear from you. Thanks for this input. What I really like about the Alcaraz/Hughes book is its accessibility 😉 Tiersma’s too for that matter. Why don’t you write that treatise?

  2. Thank you for the information, I have just placed my order with St Jerome Publishing to purchase this book (hopefully it will arrive in time for me to complete my thesis 🙂 ), ciao, Daniela

      • Update: there were a few issues with delivery (sent to billing address instead of dispatching address) but Mr Baker from St Jerome publishing was extremely helpful and manged to send me an express delivery copy in time for me to complete my research. I believe it’s important to highlight the excellent customer service offered by the publishing house 🙂 (by the way, I hope ou don’t mind me sharing my pride: full marks – 110/110 -cum laude for my thesis!)

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