Science of Translation

  • Eberhard WernerEmail author
Reference work entry


The science of translation has deep roots in translation attempts back to early times of humankind. Very recently it developed into many branches. Growing computational translation addresses the use of new media for translation attempts. Translation as such is an intuitive and nonempiric approach. Translation theory is focusing on communication in general and the speech act in particular. “Text” becomes a metaphor for written, oral-aural, and thought realizations of human ideas. Professional training of translators as well as theories of translation and at least the ethics of translation are in focus. An additional paragraph is given to Translationese as one challenge of the science of translation.


Science of translation Translation theory Dynamic equivalence Relevance theory Functional translation Skopos theory Communication sciences Speech act Mass communication Framework models Translationese 


  1. Arduini, S. (2007). Introduction: Epistemology and theory, in Africa. In P. A. Noss (Ed.), A history of Bible translation (pp. 185–193). Roma: Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura.Google Scholar
  2. Austin, J. L. (1976). How to do things with words. Oxford: Clarendon.Google Scholar
  3. Baker, M. (2001). Translation studies. In M. Baker & K. Malmkjaer (Eds.), Routledge encyclopaedia of translation studies (pp. 277–280). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  4. Baker, M., & Malmkjaer, K. (Eds.). (2001). Encyclopedia of translation studies. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  5. Bascom, R. (2003). The role of culture in translation. In T. Wilt (Ed.), Bible translation: Frames of reference (pp. 81–111). Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  6. Beekman, J., & Callow, J. (1974). Translating the word of god. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.Google Scholar
  7. Bernardini, S., & Baroni, M. (2005). Spotting translationese: A corpus-driven approach using support vector machines. In Proceedings of corpus linguistics 2005, Birmingham. Online in the Internet. [Word-File]. Accessed 18 Apr 2017.
  8. Bernardini, S., & Baroni, M. (2006). A new approach to the study of translationese: Machine-learning the difference between original and translated text. Literary and Linguistic Computing, 21(3), 259–274.Google Scholar
  9. Borg, M. J. (2001). Reading the Bible again for the first time: Taking the Bible seriously but not literally. San Francisco: Harper.Google Scholar
  10. Braun, S. (2001). Ein kognitives Modell der Kommunikation: die Relevanztheorie. Oder: Wie verstehen wir, was wir verstehen? Frankfurt (Oder): Europa-Universität Viadrina. Online. [PDF-File]. Accessed 28 Apr 2017 [English edition: A cognitive model of communication: Relevance theory. Or: How do we understand what we understand?].Google Scholar
  11. Carrithers, M. (1992). Why humans have cultures: Explaining anthropology and social diversity. Oxford: Opus.Google Scholar
  12. Chesterman, A. (2001). Proposal for a hieronymic oath. In A. Pym (Ed.), The translator: Studies in intercultural communication (Vol. 7/2, pp. 139–154). Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  13. de Waard, J., & Nida, E. A. (1986). From one language to another: Functional equivalence in Bible translating. Nashville: Thomas Nelson (FOLIA).Google Scholar
  14. Fawcett, P. (1997). Translation and language: Linguistic theories explained. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  15. Feyaerts, K. (2003). Introduction. In K. Feyaerts (Ed.), The Bible through metaphor and translation: A cognitive semantic perspective (pp. 7–12). Oxford: Peter Lang.Google Scholar
  16. Fowler, H. W. (1965). A dictionary of modern English usage, 2nd ed. Revised by Ernest Gowers. London: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  17. Frawley, W. (1984). Prolegomenon to a theory of translation. In W. Frawley (Ed.), Translation: Literary, linguistic and philosophical perspectives (pp. 159–175). London: Associated University Presses.Google Scholar
  18. Gellerstam, M. (1986). Translationese in Swedish novels translated from English. In L. Wollin & H. Lindquist (Eds.), Translation studies in Scandinavia (pp. 88–95). Lund: CWK Gleerup.Google Scholar
  19. Gellerstam, M. (1996). Translations as a source for cross-linguistic studies. In K. Aijmer, B. Altenberg, & M. Johansson (Eds.), Languages in contrast (pp. 53–62). Lund: Lund University Press.Google Scholar
  20. Gentzler, E. (2001). Contemporary translation theories, 2nd revised ed. Clevedon: Multilingual Matters.Google Scholar
  21. Grice, H. P. (1975). Logic and conversation. In P. Cole & J. Morgan (Eds.), Speech acts (pp. 41–58). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  22. Gutt, E.-A. ([1991] 2000). Translation and relevance: Cognition and context, 2nd ed. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  23. Halverson, S. L. (2008). Translations as institutional facts: An ontology for “assumed translation”. In A. Pym, M. Shlesinger, & D. Simeoni (Eds.), Beyond descriptive translation studies: Investigations in homage to Gideon Toury (pp. 343–361). Amsterdam: Benjamins.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Hermans, T. (1999). Translation in systems – Descriptive and system-oriented approaches explained. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  25. Hill, H., Gutt, E.-A., Hill, M., Unger, C., & Floyd, R. (2011). Bible translation basics: Communicating scripture in a relevant way. Dallas: SIL International.Google Scholar
  26. Holmes, J. S. ([1988] 1994). Translated! Papers on literary translation and translation studies. Amsterdam: Rodopi.Google Scholar
  27. Holz-Mänttäri, J. (1984). Translatorisches Handeln, Theorie und Methode. Helsinki: Suomalainen Tiedeakatemia. [English edition: Translational action, theory and method].Google Scholar
  28. House, J. (1977). A model for translation quality assessment. Tübingen: Gunter Narr.Google Scholar
  29. Katan, D. (1999). Translating cultures: An introduction for translators, interpreters and mediators. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  30. Kiraly, D. (2000). A social constructivist approach to translator education. Empowerment from theory to practice. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  31. Koller, W. (1978). Kritik der Theorie der Übersetzungskritik. IRAL, XVI(2), 89–108.Google Scholar
  32. Kuhn, T. S. ([1962] 1963). The structure of scientific revolutions. International Encyclopedia of Unified Science, II, 2.Google Scholar
  33. Larson, M. L. (1984). A guide to cross-language equivalence. New York: University Press of America.Google Scholar
  34. Laviosa-Braitwaith, S. (1998). Universals in translation. In M. Baker & K. Malmkjaer (Eds.), Encyclopedia of translation studies (pp. 288–291). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  35. Leman, W. (2009). Translation glossary. Online in the Internet. Accessed 17 Apr 2017.
  36. Littlejohn, S. W., & Foss, K. A. ([2005] 2008). Theories of human communication, 9th ed. Belmont: Thomson.Google Scholar
  37. McQuail, D. ([1983] 2007). McQuails mass communication theory, 5th ed. Reprint. London: Sage.Google Scholar
  38. Mojola, A. O., & Wendland, E. R. (2003). Scripture translation in the era of translation studies. In T. Wilt (Ed.), Bible translation: Frames of reference (pp. 1–26). Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  39. Neubert, A. (1986). Translatorische Relativität. In Snell-Hornby, M. (Hg.) Übersetzungswissenschaft – eine Neuorientierung: Zur Integrierung von Theorie und Praxis (pp. 85–105). Tübingen: Francke. [English edition: Translational relativity. In M. Snell-Hornby (Ed.), The science of tranlsation – A reorientation: On the integration of theory and practice].Google Scholar
  40. Newmark, P. (1988). A textbook of translation. New York: Prentice Hall.Google Scholar
  41. Nida, E. A. (1964). Toward a science of translating: With special reference to principles and procedures involved in Bible translating. Leiden: Brill (TASOT).Google Scholar
  42. Nida, E. A. ([1960] 1990). Message and mission: The communication of the Christian faith, Rev. ed. Preface from Charles Kraft. Pasadena: William Carey.Google Scholar
  43. Nida, E. A., & Taber, C. R. (1969). Theorie und Praxis des Übersetzens unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der Bibelübersetzung. New York: Weltbund der Bibelgesellschaften (UBS). [English edition: Nida, E. A., & Taber, C. R. (1969). The theory and practice of translation. Leiden: Brill (TAPOT)].Google Scholar
  44. Nika, H. (1999). The relationship between interpreting and translator-variants. Online in the Internet. Stand 17 Dec 2010.
  45. Nord, C. ([1997] 2001). Translating as a purposeful activity: Functionalist approaches explained. Reprint. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  46. Nord, C. (2003). Textanalyse und Übersetzen: Theoretische Grundlagen, Methode und didaktische Anwendung einer übersetzungsrelevanten Textanalyse (3rd ed.). Tübingen: Julius Groos. [English edition: Text analysis and translation: Theoretical foundations, methods and didactic practice of a translation-relevant text analysis, 3rd ed.].Google Scholar
  47. Nord, C. (2004). Loyalität als ethisches Verhalten im Translationsprozess. In I. Müller (Ed.), Und sie bewegt sich doch… Tanslationswissenschaft in Ost und in West, Festschrift für Heidemarie Salevsky zum 60. Geburtstag (pp. 234–245). Frankfurt: Peter Lang. [English edition: Loyality as ethical behaviour in the translation process. In I. Müller (Ed.), And still she is moving… Science of translation in East and West, Festschrift for Heidemarie Salevsky on her 60th birthday].Google Scholar
  48. Puurtinen, T. (2003). Genre-specific features of translationese? Linguistic differences between translated and non-translated Finnish children’s literature. Literary and Linguistic Computing, 18(4), 389–406. [And Online in the Internet. Accessed 17 Apr 2017].CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. Pym, A. (2007). On the historical epistemologies of Bible translating. In P. A. Noss (Ed.), A history of Bible translation (pp. 195–215). Roma: Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura.Google Scholar
  50. Pym, A. D. (2009). Natural and directional equivalence in theories of translation. In Y. Gambier & L. van Doorslaer (Eds.), The metalanguage of translation (pp. 81–104). Amsterdam/Philadelphia: John Benjamins.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  51. Pym, A., & Turk, H. (2001). Translatability. In M. Baker & K. Malmkjaer (Eds.), Routledge encyclopaedia of translation studies (pp. 273–277). London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  52. Reiss, K. (1971). Möglichkeiten und Grenzen der Übersetzungskritik: Kategorien und Kriterien für eine sachgerechte Beurteilung von Übersetzungen. Munich: Hüber. [English edition: Options and limits of translation critiques: Categories and criteria for a proper assessment of translations].Google Scholar
  53. Reiss, K., & Vermeer, H. J. ([1984] 1991). Grundlegung einer allgemeinen Translationstheorie. Zweite Aufl. Tübingen: Max Niemeyer. [English edition: Foundation of a general science of translation, 2nd ed.].Google Scholar
  54. Rizzi, A. (2008). When a text is both a pseudotranslation and a translation: The enlightening case of Matteo Maria Boiardo (1441–1494). In A. Pym, M. Shlesinger, & D. Simeoni (Eds.), Beyond descriptive translation studies: Investigations in homage to Gideon Toury (pp. 153–162). Amsterdam: Benjamins.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Robinson, D. (2002). Western translation theory: From Herodotus to Nietzsche. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  56. Sperber, D., & Wilson, D. ([1986] 1995). Relevance, communication and cognition, 2nd ed. Oxford: Blackwell.Google Scholar
  57. Steiner, G. (1990). Von realer Gegenwart: Hat unser Sprechen Inhalt? München: Carl Hanser. [English edition: Steiner, G. (1989). Real presences. London: Faber and Faber].Google Scholar
  58. Steiner, G. ([1981] 2004). Nach Babel: Aspekte der Sprache und des Übersetzens. Frankfurt am Main: Suhrkamp. [English edition: Steiner, G. ([1975] 1992). After Babel: Aspects of language and translation, 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press].Google Scholar
  59. Taft, R. (1981). The role and personality of the mediator. In S. Bochner (Ed.), The mediating person: Bridges between cultures (pp. 53–88). Cambridge, MA: Schenkman.Google Scholar
  60. Tirkkonen-Condit, S. (2002). Translationese – A myth or an empirical fact? A study into the linguistic identifiability of translated language. Targets, 14(2), 207–220.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  61. Toury, G. (1995). Descriptive translation studies and beyond. Amsterdam: John Benjamins.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  62. Vannerem, M., & Snell-Hornby, M. (1986). Die Szene hinter dem text: “Scenes-and-frames semantics” in der Übersetzung. In M. Snell-Hornby (Ed.), Übersetzungswissenschaft – eine Neuorientierung: Zur Integrierung von Theorie und Praxis (pp. 184–205). Tübingen: Francke. [English edition: The scenery behind the text: “Scene-and frames semantics” in translation. In Snell-Hornby, M. (Ed.), The science of translation a re-orientation: About the integration of theory and practice].Google Scholar
  63. Venuti, L. S. (1998). The scandals of translation: Towards an ethics of difference. London: Routledge.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Venuti, L. S. ([1995] 2008). The translator’s invisibility: A history of translation, 2nd ed. London: Routledge.Google Scholar
  65. Watzlawick, P., Beavin, J. H., & Jackson, D. D. ([1967] 1993). Menschliche Kommunikation: Formen, Störungen, Paradoxien, 8th ed. Stuttgart: Hans Huber. [English edition: Human Kommunikation: Various forms, disturbances, paradoxes, 8th ed.].Google Scholar
  66. Wendland, E. R. (2004). Translating the literature of scripture: A literary-rhetorical approach to Bible translation. Dallas: SIL International.Google Scholar
  67. Werner, E. (2011). Bibelübersetzung in Theorie und Praxis: Eine Darstellung ihrer Interdisziplinarität anhand der Ausbildungspraxis. Hamburg: Kovač. [English edition: Bible translation in theory and practice: An overview about its interdisciplinarity exemplified on the practice of training].Google Scholar
  68. Wilss, W. (1982). The science of translation: Problems and methods. Tübingen: Gunther Narr.Google Scholar
  69. Wilss, W. (1984). Zum Theorie-Praxis-Bezug der Übersetzungswissenschaft: Neue Entwicklungen. In J. Gnilka, & H. P. Rüger (Eds.), Die Übersetzung der Bibel: Aufgabe der Theologie (pp. 19–32). Bielefeld: Luther-Verlag. [English edition: On the theory-practice relation in the science of translation: New developments. In J. Gnilka, & H. P. Rüger (Eds.), The translation of the Bible: The task of theology].Google Scholar
  70. Wilt, T. (2003). Bible translation: Frames of reference. Manchester: St. Jerome.Google Scholar
  71. Yri, K. M. (2003). Recreating religion: The translation of central religious terms in the light of a cognitive approach to semantics. In K. Feyaerts (Ed.), The Bible through metaphor and translation: A cognitive semantic perspective (pp. 188–203). Oxford: Peter Lang.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Eurasia, SIL InternationalKandernGermany

Personalised recommendations