RE: More power to the readers

From: A K M Adam (
Date: Wed Mar 05 1997 - 07:53:15 EST

Dear Rolf,

"I for some time have studied Bible translation
from the viewpoint of the reader, and realize how widespread
it is to translate in a way as to force upon the reader a
particular interpretation where a neutral alternative is

"My point, however, is that the reader should be
helped to differentiate between what the text says and what
is interpretation."

We had a hermeneutics brawl on the list several months ago--ther's no need
for me to waste bandwidth re-igniting that brouhaha. I simply was to call
your attention to these assertions and inquire whether a reader as
sophisticated as you manifestly are really wants to suggest that there are
"neutral" interpretations distinct from "particular" translations, or that
there is a workable distinction between "what the text says" and
"interpretation." A number of us, with a certain familiarity with
hermeneutical issues, find such assertions doubtful (if not downright

I you wish to hash this out, let's do it off-list; otherwise, I simply
wanted to ask you to clarify your position.

Grace and peace,
A K M Adam
Princeton Theological Seminary

"A theory of truth is one theory too many"

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