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Many Bible translations, including one in Mbyá Guarani of Brazil which this article takes as a case study, use natural target-language discourse patterns on &lquo;micro-levels” (within a thematic unit and usually within a sentence or two) but source-text patterns on “macro-levels.” Questions arise: Why should such a strategy be used? Why might it work? On macro-levels, how can readers understand what is presented with source-text patterns? And on micro-levels, how can a translation claim to communicate the author’s original intent when its discourse functions—not just its forms—are radically different from those of the source text? This article explores such questions and proposes answers using concepts from such diverse areas as general cognition, text processing, genre innovation, information structure, indices of markedness and reader confidence.
Journal of Translation