BIBLE TRANSLATION – A LIGHTHOUSE AND A LIBRARY FOR THE PROMOTION AND PRESERVATION OF LANGUAGE AND ‘LITERATURE’ IN AFRICA: THE EXAMPLE OF CHINYANJA
AbstractIn this article I explore several implications of the thematic metaphorical terms “lighthouse” and “library” with reference to three translations of the complete Scriptures that have been made in the Chinyanja language of Malawi, Zambia, and Mozambique. How did these translations, one begun over a century ago, serve both to promote (enlighten, show the way, reveal the rocks) and also to preserve (act as a reservoir and repository for) the language and culture of the Chinyanja-speaking peoples of this south-central African region? My survey describes some of the major challenges, difficulties, and setbacks encountered along the way in contrast to certain outstanding successes that were achieved and new initiatives undertaken during this long history, which continues to be written in the new millennium. Several linguistic aspects of this progressive development are briefly examined in a comparative manner with reference to a number of Scripture passages as they appear in the most literal and most idiomatic Chinyanja versions. I conclude by summarizing the potential of mother-tongue Bible translation for enlarging, by way of preservation and promotion, the overall communication resources of any given language-culture, especially one that does not have a great corpus of published literature.
Authors retain copyright and grant the Journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this Journal.
This is an open access journal, and the authors and journal should be properly acknowledged, when works are cited.
Authors may use the publishers version for teaching purposes, in books, theses, dissertations, conferences and conference papers.
A copy of the authors’ publishers version may also be hosted on the following websites:
- Non-commercial personal webpage or blog.
- Institutional webpage.
- Authors Institutional Repository.
The following notice should accompany such a posting on the website: “This is an electronic version of an article published in Scriptura, Volume XXX, number XXX, pages XXX–XXX”, DOI. Authors should also supply a hyperlink to the original paper or indicate where the original paper (http://scriptura.journals.ac.za/pub) may be found.
Authors publishers version, affiliated with the Stellenbosch University will be automatically deposited in the University’s’ Institutional Repository SUNScholar.
Articles as a whole, may not be re-published with another journal.
The following license applies: