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  • 1 University of Copenhagen Center for Translation Studies Njalsgade 80, DK-2300 Copenhagen, Denmark
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This article addresses 'authoritativeness' of translations as an issue which merits interest. The first example, an Internet translation, is used to illustrate that traditional Translation Studies concepts do not always adequately describe many factors and phenomena in translation. The present article is an attempt to show that more forces are at play. Translation is discussed as a process which, from a 'text', creates a 'translation', and it is this very process and the existence of a translational product which turns the first text into 'an original' when it is defined in relation to the product in the target language. It is posited that the 'original' and the 'translation' are not authoritative in the same way. This is discussed in more depth by dividing 'translation' into boxes, referring to (a) the first text, (b) a translational process, and (c) a translational product in a target culture. The interrelation of various agents and interlinked factors in each context is then discussed. It is shown that there is fluctuation in terms of stability of source texts and that this becomes more pronounced when texts, even prominent religious texts, are handled by target-language users. The conclusion is that the authority and authoritativeness of a translation will always be questioned in a way, with an intensity and fierceness, which that of an 'original' never is.

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