According to Beekman and Callow, Bible translation styles range from the overly literal and literal to the idiomatic and unduly free (1974, 19-32). In a very broad way, these various categories help us to better understand the linguistic choices that are available when handling form and meaning in translation, but they don’t really get at the complexities that are involved when a translator must deal with translation principles that often contrast and contradict each other. This paper and presentation will present various aspects of a mediating approach to Bible translation, showing how various translations define a mediating position, and explaining how the natural tension between form and meaning in translation can be used as a strength, rather than as a weakness, in the translation process.
Translating the Bible: The case for a mediating approach is the title of my recent MA thesis, published by Reformed Theological Seminary at Charlotte, North Carolina, July 2016. The paper and presentation at BT2017 will present a synopsis of the ideas found in the thesis, as well as present relevant examples that will be helpful to other translators interested in understanding more about a mediating approach to Bible translation.