As of today the 2011 update of the New International Version Bible is available online here. Will it be accepted by longtime NIV aficionados, or will it suffer the fate of the TNIV? Time with tell.
[...] the NIV 2011 has been released [...]
The attempt at transparency is noble, but I am not convinced it will be highly accepted. As one of those who favored the NIV 1984 over the TNIV, so far I also disfavor the NIV2011. It doesn’t mean I’ll burn them when they come out in print, mind you, but it is one I will not choose for personal use on a regular basis.
The genuine problems in gender translation are pretty much removed, and they have the right view now on the singular-referring “they”. The things that annoy me that remain are not genuine problems (and hardly anything of the supposed mistranslations turned out to be genuinely problematic to begin with upon close examination of both the meaning of the text and the language of English as used today). But they do still annoy me, even if consistency in being a dynamic translation requires some of this.
The question is this: should the Bible be rendered in English “as used today” or into “natural” English? The two are not one and the same.
Stylists and publishers do not allow someone to use the generic masculine because persons of certain ideologies would be offended. Nobody wants to be called an insensitive misogynist, after all, and so people unnaturally avoid gender even when a gendered construction naturally comes to mind. In statistics we call this a lurking variable.
English as used today is under the perceived pressure of being shunned for using gender constructions, and so the data gathered does not represent the way English would be used if there were no pressure against the generic masculine.
So once again, the question is this: should Bible translations be sensitive to this unnatural pressure, or no?