Bibel in gerechter Sprache? Assumptions, process, and goals of a new german bible translation

Luzia Sutter Rehmann

… German-speaking scholars of biblical studies developed Die Bibel in gerechter Sprache independent of any ecclesiastical requirements or assumptions. They published a Bible translation that followed only linguistic and hermeneutical translation principles guided by recent scholarship in the disciplines of Hebrew Bible and New Testament. It is also the first German-language translation that openly discloses linguistic and hermeneutical assumptions and clearly locates itself in the contemporary theological movements of our time: the liberation theology movement, the feminist movement, and the ecumenical and interreligious movements, especially the Jewish-Christian dialog. The goal of translating the biblical literature into inclusive, or rather “gerechte Sprache” (just language), embraces the following three theological discourses:

1. Sensitivity toward political and social mechanisms that marginalize the “other”;
2. Sensitivity toward gender relations and open acknowledgement of the contributions of women to society and religion;
3. Sensitivity toward the problem of Christian anti-Judaism that has led to distorted depictions of Judaism in Christian Bible translations.

The editors of the new inclusive Bible translation write: “The title of this translation, Bibel in gerechter Sprache, does not claim that this translation is “just” (gerecht) and others are unjust (ungerecht). This translation accepts the challenge to deal with the foundational theme in the Bible, which is justice.”[1] …
1st April 2008, Die Bibel in gerechter Sprache (The Bible in Inclusive Language).
(The SBL Forum is an online journal of the Society of Biblical Literature. It features essays of general and professional interest to SBL members. Its mission is to provide short, useful articles to inform, educate, and address the professional needs of biblical scholars, as well as those interested in biblical studies.)