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Saturday, June 10, 2006

Good News for Everyone III

Nida writes that the story of the Good News Bible does not begin in English but in Spanish. In the 1950's the UBS prepared the Versión Popular for the more than 10 million Aboriginal Americans that spoke Spanish as a second language from Mexico to Chile. However this translation immediately became popular with Spanish speakers in places such as Mexico City, Bogotá and Buenos Aires. This Bible is now sold as the Dios Habla Hoy, God Speaks Today.

While the Versión Popular (NT) and Good News for Modern Man (NT) were both published in 1966, Nida credits the Spanish version with preceding the English version in terms of preparation. The main work on the English NT began in the early 1960's.

The translation prinicples used for this version were explained in Bible Translations for Popular Use by William L. Wonderly.

The Bible Resource Centre has an excellent article here with much more information than Nida includes in the book I am reading,
    Today’s English Version really emerged from the coalescence of several related, yet divergent, developments in the early 1960’s. A group of mid-twentieth century translators, connected with the American Bible Society and United Bible Societies, had been heavily influenced by, and in fact helped shape the direction of, contemporary linguistic theory.
    They strove to produce versions which remained more sensitive to the need of receptor audiences than many transitional works. Influential methodological contributions, including Eugene A. Nida’s Bible Translating (1947) and William Wonderly’s Bible Translations for Popular Use (1968) stressed a new approach to translations, summarized in the phrase "dynamic equivalence.”
    Nida, who began his career with the American Bible Society in 1944 and assumed principal responsibility for the Translations Department in 1946, has defined “dynamic equivalence” as a way to “stimulate in the new reader essentially the same reaction to the text as the original author wished to produce in his “first and immediate readers.” Bible translators hoped to produce versions in a “common language,” which Nida defined as “the language common to both the professor and the janitor, the business executive and the gardener, the socialite and the waiter.”
    They worked toward defining the level of language which constituted an “overlap area” between literary discourse and ordinary, day-to-day usage.Translators utilizing the principal of “dynamic equivalence” had been at work in Latin America since the 1940’s, attempting to construct a version for new literates, bilingual Indians, people with a limited knowledge of Spanish, and formally educated residents who desired a more “readable” version. Simplified selections from the Gospels appeared in 1947, the Gospel of Luke in preliminary form was published in 1954, and New Testament portions were translated subsequently.
    The unanticipated popular acclaim accorded these portions, especially in the more cosmopolitan urban centers, testified to the desire for “common language” Scriptures by large segments of the reading public. Work in the region continued, and in May 1966, the Bible Societies of Latin America completed the Version Popular, the first complete New Testament published in a “common” linguistic level in any language.
With this translation we can see the reemergence of the notion of a koine, a 'common language', that was present in the Greek New Testament, the Latin Vulgate, and Tyndale and Luther's translations.

I would like to know if anyone can confirm whether the Dios llega al hombre translation is the same as the Versión Popular.

2 Comments:

At Sun Jun 11, 08:09:00 AM, Blogger Wayne Leman said...

I would like to know if anyone can confirm whether the Dios llega al hombre translation is the same as the Versión Popular.

Yes, they are the same book. The longer name was used to attract the attention of buyers who might not be attracted to a more technial title.

It's parallel to the naming of the English version you wrote about in your post. The longer, attractive name was: Good News for Modern Man. The shorter names were Today's English Version and Good News Bible.

 
At Tue Jun 20, 07:07:00 AM, Blogger alexander said...

"Dios llega al hombre" was only the name for the New Testament early edition from Version Popular

 

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