IDEAS home Printed from
MyIDEAS: Login to save this article or follow this journal

Language and Culture in International Legal Communication

  • Alenka Kocbek

    (University of Primorska, Slovenia)

Registered author(s):

    In the contemporary business world, partners belonging to different nations, and hence different cultures, conduct business operations in either the language of one of the parties involved or in a third, neutral language, serving as lingua franca. Thus, language skills, as an essential component of the communicative competence, imply a certain extent of implicit or explicit translating and interpreting. The functionalist approaches in translation science, and most of all the Skopos theory by J. H. Vermeer, view translation as an intercultural transfer, which inevitably entails taking into account intercultural differences. As intercultural business communication is directly affected by the legal systems of the cultures involved, the communicating parties need to be acquainted with both the source and target legal systems. This is especially the case with English, as the Anglo-American legal system, based essentially on common law, differs substantially from continental law, to which most of the European countries belong. English as the world’s most commonly used lingua franca will have to be adapted to its new function by adopting terms and concepts from other cultures and, within the EU, take into consideration the existing discrepancies between the continental and the Anglo-American legal systems. In this paper, cases of non-equivalence regarding legal terms are illustrated with examples from company law. In conclusion, some linguistic and cultural implications of the use of English as lingua franca, as well as their impact on teaching and learning practices are presented.

    If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: no

    Article provided by University of Primorska, Faculty of Management Koper in its journal Managing Global Transitions.

    Volume (Year): 4 (2006)
    Issue (Month): 3 ()
    Pages: 231-247

    in new window

    Handle: RePEc:mgt:youmgt:v:4:y:2006:i:3:p:231-247
    Contact details of provider: Postal: Cankarjeva 5, SI-6104 Koper, PO BOX 345
    Phone: 05 610 20 00
    Fax: 05 610 20 15
    Web page:

    More information through EDIRC

    Order Information: Web: Email:

    No references listed on IDEAS
    You can help add them by filling out this form.

    This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

    When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:mgt:youmgt:v:4:y:2006:i:3:p:231-247. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Alen Jezovnik)

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

    If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    This information is provided to you by IDEAS at the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis using RePEc data.