2.1 Robertson

| September 2, 2020

Colin Robertson. (2012). The Problem of Meaning in Multilingual EU Legal Texts. International Journal of Law, Language & Discourse 2(1), 1-30.

Abstract: The European Union creates rules of law that bind member states and citizens. The EU, with 27 member states, is multicultural and, with 23 official languages, multilingual. Its institutions produce inter alia legislative and judicial texts, which are read and interpreted by many actors at many levels, within and outside the EU. A legal text is intended to create meaning. Its purpose is to make some change in the ‘real world’ of ideas and action in some way, within the context of legal system and policy domains, using language as a tool for communication. The EU legal text is subject to multicultural influences in negotiation and interpretation; it is created in a single text comprising 23 authentic language versions. This paper explores the problem of meaning in EU legal texts. It first introduces the EU context within which the texts are constructed. It then considers some approaches drawn from the semiotics of Peirce as tools for studying meaning across languages. Thirdly it proposes a case study of Case C-265/03 Simutenkov as an example of multilingual judicial interpretation.

Keywords: EU, legal language, meaning, multilingualism, interpretation, semiotics, Case C-265/03 Simutenkov


Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Category: Volume 2