We have a problem. It’s a problem that anyone whose mind is broader than a CAT tool manual and more open than a booth door can spot. Interpreting and translation have really, really awful PR. Sure, Larry the literary translator might get approving reviews in a book magazine or even the odd approving article in … More We need to talk about Interpreting (and Translation) PR
It has become fairly common for organisations to survey people in the language industries to try to generate a report that can encompass ongoing trends. These are no doubt useful but are plagued with problems. Might we do better by taking small pieces of data and personal experience as a starting point? In the age … More The State of Interpreting?
I’ve been an interpreter for over ten years now and I have already seen more trends and changes in fashion than I would ever have anticipated. But one thing hasn’t changed and it really should. A very old story might help to illuminate the problem. In Greek mythology, Narcissus is famous for falling so in … More The Narcissus Curse and Translation and Interpreting
As I write this paragraph, I have just closed down the meeting app for my final ITI board meeting. Over the past six years, I have served alongside two chairs, one Chief Executive and some of the finest board members that you could wish for. From the unbeatable finder of typing and punctuation errors to … More On Leaving the ITI Board
Interpreting and translation need better PR. That is almost a truism by now. But might improving the way that the world sees interpreting mean changing the way we talk about it? A few days ago, I had the honour of meeting up with translation marketing expert, Tess Whitty. For an hour or so, we wandered … More Making Interpreting Popular
Translation is a dance. Interpreters are ninjas. Translators build bridges. Interpreting creates conduits. Whenever we try to describe the power of translation and interpreting, we instinctively reach for metaphors. In fact, even the etymologies of the English words are metaphors: translation as carrying over, interpreting as standing between. But there are two fundamental problems with … More The Problem with Metaphors
The more time I spend in this weird double-world of being a researcher and practitioner, the more I find myself asking questions of both. Such as, does it make sense to have an officially-sanctioned way into the profession that requires no socialisation? And should practitioners really care about wider trends that won’t affect them directly … More What are we measuring and why?
It’s the 1950s and much of the world is recovering from the pain of the Second World War. In a desperate attempt to rebuild and stop future conflict, international organisations are springing up. The United Nations, the Council of Europe, the European Coal and Steel Community, and other all get their start in the late … More What if Interpreting Studies had started without Conference Interpreting?
“Alternative histories” are growing in popularity. People love to imagine what might have happened if big historical moments had gone a different way. Here is one that might seem to be rather strange but actually says a lot: imagine if translation theory had never been led by literary translation. Where have translation theories come from? … More Translation theory without literary translation?
In a recent post on Adrian Dreshel, sorry Alexander Drechsel’s blog, a guest writer called Daniel, sorry David introduces us to a new term. He uses the term “interp’laining” to describe the annoying habit that interpreters have of correcting errant journalists who dare to call them “translators”. The argument against it is all the more … More A Defence of Interp’laining