Browsing by Author "Van der Merwe, Christo H. J."
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- ItemAkademiese beoordeling van ’n vertaling van die Bybel in Afrikaans(Pieter de Waal Neethling Trust, 2011) Coetsee, Y.; Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.In the past the authority of Bible translations was often evaluated in terms of their equivalence to source texts. Development in translation theory has revealed, however, that the functionalist approach provides a more justified way of evaluating translations. According to this approach the extent to which a translation fulfils its purpose in a target culture should be the primary criterion for evaluation. To ensure that documentary translations do not jeopardize their authority by moving too far from the source texts Nord postulated the term “loyalty” – the loyalty that translators owe source-text authors as well as commissioning bodies. The aim of this study is to provide part of the theoretical framework in terms of which Bible translations can be evaluated by non-specialists. As practical illustration of this procedure we examined the translation of the Hebrew particle wehinneh in parts of the Nuwe Lewende Vertaling (2006) in order to ascertain whether its claims were adhered to.
- ItemAnother look at the biblical Hebrew focus particle כּﬦ(Oxford University Press, 2009) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.Despite the attention devoted to כּﬦ from various angles in recent years, there has been no exhaustive treatment in terms of all its occurrences in the Hebrew Bible. In this revision of the author's own detailed description of the focus particle in Genesis to 2 Kings, many of his earlier views are confirmed. However, it was also found that his earlier model needs some refinement....... See article for full abstract.
- ItemThe Bible in Afrikaans : a direct translation – a new type of church Bible(AOSIS Publishing, 2012-07) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.Translating the Bible so that target audiences can easily understand the meaning of the text has dominated the theory and practice of Bible translation since the 1960s. Source oriented translations that are typically associated with word-for-word translations received little theoretical reflection. However, developments in Translation Studies have made it clear that the latter type of translations do not provide the type of equivalence more conservative churches really call for. The story of the Bible in Afrikaans relates to how the Bible Society of South Africa (BSSA) has taken seriously the needs of churches in South Africa for a sourceoriented translation and teamed up with scholars to develop an academically justifiable model for a new type of church Bible. The functionalist model of Christiane Nord (1997) was used as point of departure and complimented by that of Ernst-August Gutt (2000). Pointing out the accomplishments and challenges of this pioneering project, this article paves the way for a scholarly discourse on source-oriented translations of the Bible.
- ItemBiblical exegesis, cognitive linguistics and hypertext(Brill, 2006) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Lemaire, Andre (ed)In the title of this presentation two disciplines and a technology appear to be equated. For this reason the title demands some explanation from the outset. Firstly, the research project behind this ambitious title is prompted by a perceived "crisis" in the field of biblical exegesis (and in particular the exegesis of the Hebrew Bible). Secondly, it is inspired, in general, by some opportunism that is often associated with interdisciplinarity. 1 More particularly, in the case of biblical exegesis, on the one hand, insights into the cognitive processes involved in analyzing and interpreting literary texts, as a particular mode of human communication, looked promising for addressing some issues in the field of biblical exegesis. On the other hand, there have also been so many apparent parallels between many ideas in current literary theory and hypertext theory that Landow (1997) entitles one of his recent publications: Hypertext 2.0. The Convergence qf Contemporary Critical Theory and Technology. If one assumes, and I know this is precarious, that current literary theory represents at least some aspect of what happens in the process of the comprehension ofliterary texts, it implies that hypertext technology may have something to say for biblical exegesis. The aim of this paper is to establish whether recent developments in cognitive linguistics, and hypertext as a technology which is supposed to do many things book technology could not do, may indeed make a contribution to some problematic aspects of biblical exegesis. A focus of this study will be to critically assess the current "hype" about (and my own enthusiasm for)2 the possible practical value of cognitive approaches and hypertext technology for biblical exegesis. 3 From this assessment I believe it will be evident that what is at stake here is more than just another jargon laden theory of language and/ or a gimmick that can be left for computer junkies or Bible software companies to make money with. For the purpose of this presentation it will be important to spell out clearly what I regard as the crisis in current biblical exegesis, and those areas in which I believe cognitive linguistics and hypertext technology could make a contribution. This will be the topic of the first section of the paper. In the second section I will define the notion "cognitive linguistics" and will discuss those aspects of this field of study that are relevant for our purposes. In section three developments in the theory and practice of hypertext technology, in particular those that have potential to be of value for the areas in Biblical exegesis referred to above, will be scrutinized. Since issues in two disciplines and the theory and practice of a new technology are addressed in this investigationand as a consequence many of the issues will be represented in very broad strokes-the conclusions of this investigation cannot be more than a few general observations.
- ItemBiblical Hebrew instruction : a programme benefitting from second-language learning and computer-assisted language learning(Brill, 2002) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Cook, Johann (ed)The purpose of this paper is to illustrate how, considering recent developments in linguistics and second-language instruction, computerassisted language learning (CALL) may contribute towards more effective instruction of Biblical Hebrew (=BH). Adopting a holistic approach to the instruction of BH is regarded as the best justifiable way to optimise the utilisation of advances in these fields of study for the instruction of this language. Against this background the language model, the instructional design and implementation strategy for a programme that may enhance the instruction and learning of BH is described. This programme is intended for full-time residential students, but it also tries to provide an opportunity for other highly motivated learners to acquire a basic knowledge of BH with the minimum involvement of a human tutor.
- ItemBiblical Hebrew lexicology : a cognitive linguistic perspective(Waltrop, 2006) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.Hebrew (=BH) and other Semitic languages, one seldom comes across explicit definitions of the term “lexicography”. An exception is O’Connor (2002). According to him, lexicography seeks to guide and describe the production of books that people actually use. ... Three tasks are basic to lexicography... These are (a) delimitation of the material studies (What is this a? lexicon of?), (b) the structural segmentation of the material studies (What are the working units of the lexicon?), and (c) the delimitation and arrangement of relevant information (What is the lexicon going to provide the user with concerning each of the working units?). What I do find lacking, even in O’Connor’s thorough overview of Biblical Hebrew lexicons, as well as the earlier influential works of James Barr (1973, 1992, 1993, 1994), the “Introduction” to the new lexicon by Clines et al. (1993:14-29), Lübbe’s range of publications on Biblical Hebrew lexicography (1990, 1993, 1994, 2002, 2003), Muraoka (1995 and 1998), Emerton (1997) and De Blois (2000, 2002a and 2002b), is any reference or even the recognition of significant advances in the field of theoretical lexicography. Names of the pioneers in this field of study – like Zgusta and Wiegand – are nowhere to be found. It is beyond the perspectives from theoretical lexicography for Biblical Hebrew lexicography. But even a cursory consideration of the insights gained in this field of study suggests that it can assist BH scholars in the use of principled criteria for the delimitation and structuring of information in BH dictionaries in terms of the purpose a particular lexicon is supposed to fulfil (Imbayarwo 2003).
- ItemBiblical Hebrew word order : the interface of information structure and formal features(W. Kohlhammer, 2003) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Talstra, Eep; Bartelmus, Rudiger (ed); Jenni, Ernst (ed); Kedar-Kopfstein, Benjamin (ed); Lichtenberger, Hermann (ed); Lipinski, Edward (ed); Muller, Hans-Peter (ed); Renz, Johannes (ed); Segert, Stanislav (ed); Stuckenbruck, Loren T. (ed)In recent years different theoretical frames of reference were used in attempts to better understand the language(s) of the Hebrew Bible. While the 19th and first half of the 20th century were dominated by historical-comparative approaches, structuralist and functional approaches started to get the upperhand in many circles during the latter quarter of the previous century.2 One of the main features of the latter two modem linguistic approaches is the use of distributional criteria. Linguistic categories at various levels of linguistic description are identified on account of the fact that the members of each category enjoy the same paradigmatic and syntagmatic distribution. The formal character and intersubjective verifiability of categories identified on account of distributional criteria are of the major reasons why the use of these criteria has been established as one of the cornerstones of most current linguistic research. However, the question whether distributional criteria can render significant insight to linguistic phenomena beyond the level of the clause is still being debated. Furthermore, the empirical status of functional labels that are attached to categories involved at these higher levels of description also gave rise to a number of questions and uncertainties.
- ItemDie Hebreeuse grammatika en die eksegese van die Ou Testament : 'n tipologiese studie(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 1982) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of . Dept. of .
- ItemThe Difference between הִנֵּה ,הֵן and רְאֵה(Herder GmbH, 2011) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Gross , Erasmus (ed); Stipp, Hermann-Josef (ed)The present work investigates the differences between three apparent nearsynonyms הִנֵּה ,הֵן and רְאֵה . Their semantic potential is established on the basis of exhaustive studies of the occurrences of each form in the Hebrew Bible. We conclude that the most prototypical sense of רְאֵה overlaps with one of the less typical (i.e. secondary developments) of הִנֵּה but that רְאֵה and הֵן cannot be used interchangeably.
- ItemA direct translation of the Bible as ancient text : only a new name for a stilted word-for-word translation?(EOS Verlag, 2016) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.The purpose of this article is to demonstrate that the term “direct translation” as it is used by the Bible Society of South Africa (=BSSA) is not merely a new label for a stilted word-for-word translation, but a technical term having a very specific meaning within an academi-cally justifiable translation model that was formulated for the new Bible in Afrikaans. It will also try to show that, although attempts to translate an-cient texts “directly” pursue an almost impossible ideal, direct translation nevertheless proposes a solution for the vexing problems that translators may come up against. What is more, the challenges posed by attempts at direct translation may serve as catalysts for new research on understanding ancient texts.
- ItemDirekte vertaling van die Bybel as antieke teks : net ’n nuwe benaming vir ’n stokkerige woordelikse vertaling(LitNet, 2014-12) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.Die term direkte vertaling kan maklik vereenselwig word met ’n stokkerige letterlike of woordelikse vertaling. Die doel van hierdie artikel is om te illustreer dat hierdie term soos wat dit in Die Bybel: ’n Direkte vertaling gebruik word, ’n spesifieke tegniese betekenis het, en dat dit verstaan moet word as ’n akademies verantwoordbare vertaalmodel wat vir die nuwe Bybel in Afrikaans geformuleer is. In hierdie artikel word, aan die een kant, ’n kritiese blik gebied op die vertaalteoretiese grondslae van die dinamies-ekwivalente 1983-vertaling en, aan die ander kant, die akademiese besinning wat ten grondslag van hierdie nuwe vertaling lê, beskryf. Die studie illustreer dat die term direkte vertaling ’n poging verwoord om ’n vernuwende oplossing te bied vir die eeue oue spanning tussen getrouheid aan die outeurs van die antieke bronteks en die verstaanbaarheid daarvan vir ernstige Bybellesers vandag. In die lig van die inferensiemodel van kommunikasie word geargumenteer dat Bybelvertaling ’n baie moeilike vorm van sekondêre kommunikasie is. Dit impliseer dat antieke tekste maklik misverstaan kan word indien die konseptuele wêreld van moderne lesers nie deur middel van ’n metateks nader aan dié van wêreld van die mense van die wêreld gebring word nie. Met verwysing na Rigters 6–8 word insigte vanuit veral die kognitiewe taalkunde oor hoe betekenis in taal werk, ingespan om te illustreer hoe die uitdagings ten opsigte van drie soorte kommunikasieleidrade die hoof gebied kan word in ’n direkte vertaling daarvan. Die voorbeelde illustreer dat ’n direkte vertaling gewone lesers te staan bring voor die andersheid van die taal, kultuur en wêreld van die Bybel. Vir Bybels-Hebreeuse taalkundiges en vertalers bring dit te staan voor die nugtere werklikheid van al die oorwegings wat in ag geneem (en nog nagevors) moet word as hulle ’n antieke teks direk probeer vertaal.
- ItemFronting and exhaustive exclusion in Biblical Hebrew(Stellenbosch University, Department of Linguistics, 2017) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.Biblical Hebrew scholars struggle to account for about one third of instances of fronting in the Hebrew Bible in terms of a coherent semantic-pragmatic model. I hypothesize that considering fronting as a construction (i.e. a form-meaning pair) that could encode various semantic-pragmatic functions, including “exhaustive exclusion”, could be one of the solutions to this challenge.
- ItemHow direct can a direct translation be? : some perspectives from the realities of a new type of church Bible(AOSIS Publishing, 2016) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.The skopos of this new type of church Bible is: ‘How would the source texts of the Bible have sounded in Afrikaans in the context envisaged for its hypothesised first audience(s)?’ Fully acknowledging the complexities of language as a dynamic and complex system embedded in the culture and conceptual world of its speakers, as well as the wide range of frames that are involved in the process of Bible translation as a difficult form of secondary communication, this article addresses two of the challenges of this ambitious project. In the first section the incongruence between the world of the Old Testament and speakers of Afrikaans is treated. Examples are provided of instances where both the nature of difficult secondary intercultural communication as well as the subjective theories of the host audience constrains the ‘directness’ of the translation. In the second section, some of the challenges of distinguishing between the formal and functional features of Biblical Hebrew are dealt with. The article concludes that, although the notion ‘communicative clue’ provides a useful heuristic device to act as point of departure for negotiations on the construal of the meaning of the text in the source language and host language respectively, the notion has to be supplemented by insights from the fields of cultural anthropology, cognitive linguistics and linguistic typology. A better understanding of how meaning ‘works’ (e.g. how linguistic expressions act as windows into the conceptual worlds of speakers, how the meaning of expressions may shift and develop, as well as processes of grammaticalisation) provides members of a translation team with some criteria to make informed decisions when they negotiate how the meaning of specific Biblical Hebrew constructions are to be construed ‘directly’ in Afrikaans.
- ItemHow ‘direct’ can a direct translation be? : some perspectives from the realities of a new type of church Bible(AOSIS Publishing, 2016) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.The skopos of this new type of church Bible is: ‘How would the source texts of the Bible have sounded in Afrikaans in the context envisaged for its hypothesised first audience(s)?’ Fully acknowledging the complexities of language as a dynamic and complex system embedded in the culture and conceptual world of its speakers, as well as the wide range of frames that are involved in the process of Bible translation as a difficult form of secondary communication, this article addresses two of the challenges of this ambitious project. In the first section the incongruence between the world of the Old Testament and speakers of Afrikaans is treated. Examples are provided of instances where both the nature of difficult secondary intercultural communication as well as the subjective theories of the host audience constrains the ‘directness’ of the translation. In the second section, some of the challenges of distinguishing between the formal and functional features of Biblical Hebrew are dealt with. The article concludes that, although the notion ‘communicative clue’ provides a useful heuristic device to act as point of departure for negotiations on the construal of the meaning of the text in the source language and host language respectively, the notion has to be supplemented by insights from the fields of cultural anthropology, cognitive linguistics and linguistic typology. A better understanding of how meaning ‘works’ (e.g. how linguistic expressions act as windows into the conceptual worlds of speakers, how the meaning of expressions may shift and develop, as well as processes of grammaticalisation) provides members of a translation team with some criteria to make informed decisions when they negotiate how the meaning of specific Biblical Hebrew constructions are to be construed ‘directly’ in Afrikaans.
- ItemLeft dislocation : an exploration in linguistic typology(University of Stellenbosch, Department of General Linguistics, 2016) Andrason, Alexander; Westbury, Josh; Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.No abstract available
- ItemLeft dislocation and its translation in some Germanic languages(Stellenbosch University, Department of General Linguistics, 2016) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.In terms of the theoretical framework of an influential recent model of Bible translation, Left Dislocation (=LD) can be regarded as a “communicate clue” that translators must try to interpretively resemble in their target text translation. This exploratory study investigates how twenty translations (fifteen English, three Afrikaans, one German, and one Dutch) have interpretively resembled (or not) nine prototypical constructions, and one less prototypical one, from the book of Genesis. It has been found that, firstly, translations on the formal equivalent pole tend to interpretively resemble LD constructions. If the LD tends to be very prototypical, this tendency is displayed even by some translations towards the functional equivalent pole. Secondly, even in the case of prototypical instances, translations on the functional equivalent pole, however, tend not to interpretively resemble the construction. In these cases, it could be argued that they are not serving the very goal that they as a rule want to accomplish—that is, to provide readers with a translation that is easy to read and process. Thirdly, the structure of English, Afrikaans and Dutch—in contrast to German—often appears to require a construal that does not formally reflect the pronominal resumption of the LD constituent in the matrix clause. Fronting the LD constituent is often used, and sometimes a pause after the fronted (i.e. then dislocated) constituent is signaled by means of a comma or a dash. These findings concur with those of some of the other papers in this volume. Resumption, for example, is not always the primary distinctive feature of a LD construction; a tonal pause between the LD and its matrix clause may also suffice. There are also historical explanations as to why some of the functions of fronting and LD constructions overlap.
- ItemLexical meaning in biblical Hebrew and cognitive semantics : a case study(Biblica, 2006) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.In a recent survey of Biblical Hebrew lexica(l), it was pointed out that the theoretical frames of reference underlying both the older classics such as Brown-Driver-Briggs (=BDB)(2) and Koehler and Baumgartner (=KB)e), as well as the more recent Dictionary of Classical Hebrew ( =DCH) (4), can be called into question(S). Two weaknesses were highlighted. Firstly, the layout and structure of these dictionaries reflect very little of the wealth of insights provided by theoretical lexicography (i.e. the theoretical reflection about the practice of dictionary making) and dictionary criticism in recent years (6). Secondly, the semantic model(s) underlying available Biblical Hebrew dictionaries are either outdated (in the case ofBDB and KB), or represent a very narrow and inadequate version of what modern linguistics has to offer for Biblical Hebrew lexicology (in the case ofDCH). If one considers, even in very broad terms, recent developments in the field of semantics, in particular cognitive semantics, the shortcomings of bilingual Biblical Hebrew-English dictionaries that provide mere translation glosses (in the case of BDB and KB), or glosses supplemented with lists of the systematic syntagmatic distribution of lexical items (in the case of Clines) soon become evident. For example, if one accepts the insights about the ways in which humans across languages use linguistic terms to categorize their world, and the cultural embedment of languages' lexical stock, a new perspective emerges on the type of information that is indispensable in a bilingual dictionary of which the source and target languages are remote in time and space. However, although cognitive semantics provides promising new perspectives on the notion of "lexical meaning", it does not present - as any other linguistic theory does - a ready-made model that can merely be applied to an ancient language like Biblical Hebrew. Issues that are still debated, for example, are the exact role that syntactic and encyclopedic information should play in the analysis and interpretation of lexical items.
- ItemMarked word order in the book of Joel(Department of Ancient Studies, Stellenbosch University, 2010) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Wendland, Ernst R.The function of BH word order (or more specifically clause constituent order) patterns has received considerable attention during the last two decades. Recently, Lunn (2006) provided an innovative explanation of how the relative frequently occurring instances of fronting and double fronting in poetic texts could be explained. In this paper marked constituent order patterns in the book of Joel are analyzed in terms of the information structure of the strophes and stanzas in which they occur in order to determine whether Lunn’s model also applies to the poetry of the book Joel. Using their own semantic-pragmatic model for explaining constituent order, the authors establish that, on the one hand their findings concur with those of Lunn, but on the other hand, they do not need to resort to the “uniquely poetic” principles formulated by Lunn.
- ItemNog 'n vertaling van die Bybel in Afrikaans : wat maak dit anders?(Suid-Afrikaanse Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns, 2020) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.Die 2020-vertaling is anders as die ander vertalings van die Bybel in Afrikaans omdat daar op ’n innoverende manier ’n wyse gevind moes word om aan die behoeftes van kerke wat die Bybel in Afrikaans gebruik, te voldoen. Dit is naamlik die behoefte aan ’n verstaanbare vertaling in idiomatiese Afrikaans wat baie na aan die bronteks bly. In hierdie alternatiewe vertaalmodel is ’n byna onmoontlike ideaal gestel: ’n “Direkte” vertaling wat poog om die bronteks te vertaal asof die skrywers direk in goeie idiomatiese Afrikaans aangehaal word. Dié vertaalmodel het ’n grondige besinning vereis oor die taalmodel waarmee gewerk sou word. In hierdie verband het die kognitiewe taalkunde waardevolle insigte gebied. Baie van hierdie insigte is nie heeltemal nuut nie, maar eerder verdere ontwikkelings en/of verfynings van tradisionele wyshede waarmee alreeds in die histories-filologiese semantiek gewerk is. ’n Voorbeeld in hierdie verband is die feit dat taal volledig ingebed is in die kultuur en ervarings van die sprekers van die betrokke taal. (Dit is daarom byna onvermydelik dat lesers sommige vertalings nie gaan verstaan nie, tensy die vertaling van toeligtende kommentaar voorsien word.) Verdere waardevolle insigte uit die kognitiewe taalkunde, wat met behulp van voorbeelde geïllustreer word, is dat daar onderskei moet word tussen die prototipiese en minder prototipiese betekenisse van uitdrukkings; dat betekenisverskuiwings geleidelik geskied en dat dit eie aan menslike taal is dat sommige onderskeidings moeilik is om te maak; en dat betekenisonderskeidings tipies met kenmerkende ko- en kontekstuele raamwerke vir elkeen van die onderskeidings gepaard gaan en dat die vorme wat sprekers gebruik of aan hulle taaluitings gee, altyd die primêre uitgangspunt van die interpretasie daarvan moet wees.
- ItemThe old Hebrew particle gam : a syntactic-semantic description of gam in Gn-2Kg(Stellenbosch : Stellenbosch University, 1988) Van der Merwe, Christo H. J.; Stellenbosch University. Faculty of . Dept. of .