Tucker Lecture 2015; Louisiana State University, Center for Civil Law Studies

Esin Örücü, Professor Emeritus of Comparative Law at the University of Glasgow, as well as Professor Emeritus of Comparative Law, Erasmus University, Rotterdam, and one of the world’s most distinguished scholars of Comparative Law, delivered the Tucker Lecture on 17 March 2015, at the Centre for Civil Law Studies at the Paul M. Hebert Law Center of the Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge. Her title was: “One into Three: Spreading the Word Three into One: Creating a Civil Law System.” Professor Örücü explored the significance of translations, starting by looking at some general concerns such as language, culture, transpositions, neologisms, equivalence, mistranslations and then moving on to illustrating these issues through the experience of Turkey with her process of total and global modernization, westernization, secularization, democratization and constitutionalism.  The lecture then dealt with the translation into Turkish from the already-trilingual Swiss Civil Code, seemingly a “three into one” case, though only the French version was used by the Turkish translators. This was defined as “creating a civil law system,” converting within the span of five years, via five Codes, the efforts of reform resting solely on import and translation from major continental Codes both as to form and content, creating a civilian legal system out of a mixed one. Finally, she posed a crucial question related to all translated codes: why translate a code? Various aims and reasons were analysed.

esinesin  Photos courtesy Georgia Chadwick, LSU Centre for Civil Law Studies, and University of Glasgow