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Lishan Didan, Targum Didan


Translation Language in a Neo-Aramaic Targum Tradition


This study examines the language and translation technique used in a modern “targum” of the Bible. The targum – referred to as “Manuscript Barzani” – is a written preservation of a tradition of Jewish Neo-Aramaic Bible translation, originally transmitted in oral form among the religious leaders of a community in Iraqi Kurdistan. It represents a literary form of the Neo-Aramaic spoken by the Jews of the Rewanduz/Arbel region. Within their community, the targum was used in the schools to teach the language and text of the Hebrew Bible to the young men.
Publisher: Gorgias Press LLC
Availability: In stock
SKU (ISBN): 978-1-59333-426-0
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Publication Status: In Print

Publication Date: Dec 16,2008
Interior Color: Black
Trim Size: 6 x 9
Page Count: 326
Language: English
ISBN: 978-1-59333-426-0
$164.00
$114.80

This study examines the language and translation technique used in a modern “targum” (interpretive translation) of the Bible. The targum – referred to as “Manuscript Barzani” (msB) – is a written preservation of a tradition of Jewish Neo-Aramaic Bible translation, originally transmitted in oral form among the religious leaders of a community in Iraqi Kurdistan. It represents a literary form of the Neo-Aramaic spoken by the Jews of the Rewanduz/Arbel region. Within their community, the targum was used in the schools to teach the language and text of the Hebrew Bible to the young men. This translation has parallels in the translation traditions and cultural contexts of other Jewish language communities. The translation technique used in all of these communities likewise demonstrates a continuity with Targum Onqelos and Jonathan. Part I is a description of the morphology of the literary language in which the text is written. Part II consists of an analysis of the translation technique used throughout msB, with reference to previous scholarship on ancient versions. In part III, the place of this specific translation language is considered within the larger context of Jewish languages, communities and Bible translations. The text of msB is compared directly with other Bible translations from within the Neo-Aramaic traditions, as well as from other Jewish language traditions. The role of translation in the history of Jewish education is also examined as a means of determining the relationship between form and function in this particular style of traditional Bible translation.

Margo Rees received her Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary-PSCE (Richmond) in 2002. She continued her research in Hebrew and Aramaic at the Faculty of Oriental Studies, University of Cambridge, where she received her PhD in 2006. She works with modern as well as classical Semitic languages and Bible translations, studying the history of biblical translation in Judaism.

This study examines the language and translation technique used in a modern “targum” (interpretive translation) of the Bible. The targum – referred to as “Manuscript Barzani” (msB) – is a written preservation of a tradition of Jewish Neo-Aramaic Bible translation, originally transmitted in oral form among the religious leaders of a community in Iraqi Kurdistan. It represents a literary form of the Neo-Aramaic spoken by the Jews of the Rewanduz/Arbel region. Within their community, the targum was used in the schools to teach the language and text of the Hebrew Bible to the young men. This translation has parallels in the translation traditions and cultural contexts of other Jewish language communities. The translation technique used in all of these communities likewise demonstrates a continuity with Targum Onqelos and Jonathan. Part I is a description of the morphology of the literary language in which the text is written. Part II consists of an analysis of the translation technique used throughout msB, with reference to previous scholarship on ancient versions. In part III, the place of this specific translation language is considered within the larger context of Jewish languages, communities and Bible translations. The text of msB is compared directly with other Bible translations from within the Neo-Aramaic traditions, as well as from other Jewish language traditions. The role of translation in the history of Jewish education is also examined as a means of determining the relationship between form and function in this particular style of traditional Bible translation.

Margo Rees received her Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary-PSCE (Richmond) in 2002. She continued her research in Hebrew and Aramaic at the Faculty of Oriental Studies, University of Cambridge, where she received her PhD in 2006. She works with modern as well as classical Semitic languages and Bible translations, studying the history of biblical translation in Judaism.

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