Global Journal of Politics and Law Research (GJPLR)

EA Journals

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Functional Equivalence in Legal Translation: Legal Contracts as a Case Study (Published)

The aim of the present study is to investigate the applicability of Nida’s functional or dynamic approach in legal translation, specifically in translating legal contracts. It is also aimed at investigating the difficulties that translators encounter in translating legal contracts in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and at shedding light on the translation procedures used by translators in translating legal contracts. Data were obtained from two sources. First, a translation task was assigned to two translators for the purpose of comparing and analyzing two translations each of five legal contracts. Second, a semi-structured interview was conducted to determine the real-world difficulties that translators usually encounter in translating legal contracts. The study revealed that serious problems arise from applying only the formal equivalence approach. There is an urgent need for an integrated approach to legal translation that combines both the literal and the free approaches or the formal and the dynamic approaches, fully taking into account the lexical, syntactic, cultural, and stylistic factors in the translation process.

Keywords: Contract, Equivalence, Free Translation, Legal, Legal translation, dynamic equivalence, formal equivalence, functional equivalence, literal translation.

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