Lexicography for specific purposes.
Equivalence in bilingual and multilingual specialised dictionaries with reference to conceptual systems.
WU Online Papers in International Business Communication, 2012/1.
WU Vienna University of Economics and Business, Vienna.
Terminological equivalence is one of the central issues in translation. To secure equivalence in translations for special purpose languages, the translator has to structure the terms of a given text by reference to a conceptual system and thus identify - independently for both the source and target languages - the conceptual system in which a specific term is embedded. Bilingual and multilingual dictionaries are indispensable tools for any translator. However, due to the importance of the conceptual systems in specialised-language translation, a specialised dictionary has to fulfill higher requirements than general dictionaries. As a matter of fact, a dictionary suitable for specialised-language translation should follow an onomasiological rather than a semasiological approach to lexicography. In this paper, the author studies the basic requirements for a bilingual dictionary that is intended to be of practical use for specialised-language translation, taking a user's perspective when discussing the problem of equivalence between terms in two languages. This is based on selected concepts taken from the field of accounting (IAS/IFRS and national accounting rules) that are translated from German to Spanish and vice versa.
While the dictionaries examined are generally well prepared, the study shows that none of them includes information necessary to a translator for ensuring a correct translation. (author's abstract)